SAN ANTONIO — Heat coach Erik Spoelstra spoke of his team strengthening its "collective resolve" after Thursday's telling defeat to the Magic. On Friday, Miami got that chance.
Hype met substance on Friday night in San Antonio. Substance won: Spurs 125, Heat 95. Bolstered by a 28-2 record at home, the Spurs (51-11) entered Friday with the best record in the NBA. It didn't take long to figure out why.
San Antonio jumped out to a 24-point lead in the first quarter and that was that. Sure, the Heat cut the lead to 12 by halftime, but — unlike the Heat (43-19) — the Spurs don't blow big leads at home. San Antonio's advantage was back to 24 points in the third quarter and Spoelstra pulled the Heat's Big 3 with more than eight minutes left in the game.
"We've only been close in this building one time and that was the year we won it," Heat guard Dwyane Wade said. "They always come out and blitz us this way. [Gregg] Popovich is a great coach. He knows how to get his team shots behind the three-point arc."