For most of the night, the third option practically turned into the only option.
This time, even as an undersized center, Chris Bosh was second to none.
This time he had to be.
And it still wasn't enough.
At least not until venerable guard Ray Allen reminded everyone of his own ageless possibilities.
With Allen converting a four-point play with 6.7 seconds to play, the Miami Heat held off the Denver Nuggets 119-116 Saturday night at AmericanAirlines Arena.
"We found a way to grind it out," coach Erik Spoelstra said.
Typically, when you get a 40-point game from a player, as the Heat did from Bosh, you don't find yourself in a grind-out game.
But this was no typical Heat game, not with defense taking a holiday.
"That was a little more circa 1980 NBA, with the tempo both ways," Spoelstra said. "We clearly did not play how we wanted to play defensively, consistently."
So even after Bosh shot 15 of 22 from the field and 9 of 10 from the foul line for those 40 points to eclipse his previous Heat high of 35, the Heat still needed one more play from someone else.
Ray Allen's dagger saves Heat on Chris Bosh's 40-point night
Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel | Nov 4