, Newburyport, MA


May 10, 2013

Heat not bothered by physical play


“What happened last night would’ve been [like a] couple of guys getting punched in the face in the ‘80s. I don’t really get into it too much. I hold my ground, but I don’t get too rah-rah about it because nothing’s going to happen.”

Spoelstra said he had no problems with the officiating and didn’t consider anything out of the norm.

“You have two culture organizations who pride themselves on defense and toughness, so that’s what you’ll get,” Spoelstra said. “Because of the technicals and ejections there’s going to be a perception that it’s gone above and beyond basketball. It’s not. Both teams are competing and want it to be decided between the floor lines.”

Heat guard Dwyane Wade agreed it’s nice to have two enforcer-types like Udonis Haslem and Chris “The Birdman” Andersen when the chippy play begins.

Haslem knocked trash-talking guard Nate Robinson to the floor on the first play of the game to set the tone. Nine seconds later, Wade was pushed from behind while driving and received a technical for throwing the ball at Marco Belinelli.

In the second quarter, Andersen was whistled for a flagrant foul after body-checking Belinelli into the Bulls’ bench.

“We love Birdman, he’s a force who brings something we’ve been missing around here,” Wade said. “It’s great to have guys like him and U.D., you needs those guys surrounding us.”


Although it’s still unlikely that any of the three sidelined Bulls will play Friday night, Spoelstra spent time on Thursday talking to his team about Hinrich, Luol Deng and possibly Derrick Rose.

“We have to be ready for it,” Spoelstra said. “We anticipate that Deng and Hinrich will likely be back, and possibly Rose for a real emotional boost for them. But it doesn’t change the way we play.

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