South Beach isn't home to a team that readily admits it has found itself in a must-win situation. Short of facing a Game 7, Miami isn't known for getting caught up in the hype.
Wade is shielding himself from such hysteria now. The significance of the Heat's Game 2 bout against the Spurs isn't lost on him or his teammates.
“We’re not a team that really says too much, but this is a must-win game," Wade said (via Marc Berman of The New York Post). "We have to win this game at home and play a lot better.’’
The last thing the Heat want to do is head back to San Antonio down 2-0 tasked with winning at least two out of three games on the road to stay alive.
Stemming back to the regular season, the Spurs have lost just seven games all year at home, and that fact is not lost on Wade.
To avoid disappointment in Game 2, Wade knows he needs to step up. He was held scoreless in the fourth quarter of the opening contest, when San Antonio outscored Miami 23-16.
“I’ve been in this state [knee injury] for three months now," he said. "I’ve adjusted to playing with it. I will try to be different [tonight] in the second half.’’
Even if Wade fails to show up in the second half or fourth quarter, the Heat have recent history on their side. Miami has not lost back-to-back games since January, and the last time the Heat lost consecutive contests at home was in March of 2011.
“There’s pros and cons with having 48 hours in between games, especially after a loss,’’ LeBron James said. “It eats away at you. But it allows you to really pinpoint ways you can get better in the next game. We’ve used this time wisely.’’
We'll know soon enough if those 48 hours of perspective culminate in a Heat victory.