Sports

Heat's Bosh bruises Bulls in Game 3

MIAMI — For the second time in three games, Chris Bosh had a monster night against the Chicago Bulls.

Unlike the first, this one paid off with a win.

And the Miami Heat is two victories from their first trip to the NBA Finals since 2006.

Bosh scored 34 points, LeBron James finished with 22 points and 10 assists, and the Heat remained unbeaten at home in the postseason by beating the Bulls 96-85 in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals on Sunday night.

Dwyane Wade added 17 points and nine rebounds for Miami, which is now 7-0 at home and handed the team that finished with the NBA's best record its first losing streak since Feb. 5-7. Udonis Haslem sealed it with a jumper with 1:29 left, putting Miami up 93-84.

Bosh scored 30 points in Game 1 against Chicago, when Miami was embarrassed 103-82. The Heat hasn't lost since, and only trailed for 3:22 in Game 3.

"I just wanted to be aggressive and just have some kind of imprint on this series," said Bosh, who's in the conference finals for the first time. "I had an aggressive Game 1, Game 2 was so-so, but we still won. But out here on the home floor I just wanted to be aggressive and it turned out to be a good game."

A really good game: It was five points shy of his postseason career best.

Carlos Boozer finished with 26 points and 17 rebounds for Chicago, which had won the first four meetings of the season with Miami. Derrick Rose finished with 20 points, but struggled from the field again, making only 8 of his 19 shots.

Taj Gibson had 11 off the Chicago bench.

The Bulls held James and Wade to a combined 12-for-30 showing from the floor. Problem was, Bosh finished 13 for 18.

"It's definitely frustrating," Rose said. "Our will wasn't there tonight. They still found a way to win."

Boozer made a pair of free throws with 6:39 left to get Chicago within 78-74, the outcome clearly hanging in the balance. Minutes later, that was no longer the case — not after Miami scored nine straight to build more than enough of a cushion.

Bosh and Boozer exchanged words and looks more than once on Sunday night, but Bosh ended up with the upper hand.

"All I care about is winning games," Bosh said. "And we do whatever it takes to get that."

How good was Miami's defense down that stretch? Bulls center Joakim Noah tried a 5-footer with 4:25 left. He shot it over the backboard.

Game 4 is Tuesday night in Miami.

CHICAGO (85): Deng 6-13 0-0 14, Boozer 8-19 10-12 26, Noah 0-4 1-2 1, Rose 8-19 3-3 20, Bogans 1-3 1-2 4, Asik 0-3 0-0 0, Gibson 5-6 1-2 11, Brewer 2-6 0-0 4, Watson 1-2 0-0 2, Korver 1-2 0-0 3. Totals 32-77 16-21 85

MIAMI (96): James 6-13 9-9 22, Bosh 13-18 8-10 34, Anthony 1-2 1-2 3, Bibby 2-5 0-0 6, Wade 6-17 5-6 17, Haslem 4-7 0-0 8, Miller 0-2 0-0 0, Chalmers 2-3 2-2 6. Totals 34-67 25-29 96

Chicago15 25 25 20—85 Miami18 25 25 28—96

3-Point Goals—Chicago 5-12 (Deng 2-5, Korver 1-1, Bogans 1-3, Rose 1-3), Miami 3-9 (Bibby 2-4, James 1-2, Chalmers 0-1, Miller 0-1, Wade 0-1). Fouled Out—None. Rebounds—Chicago 49 (Boozer 17), Miami 38 (Wade 9). Assists—Chicago 15 (Noah 6), Miami 20 (James 10). Total Fouls—Chicago 24, Miami 17. A—20,123 (19,600).

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