Bosh prepared for return to Toronto

FRANK ZICARERLLI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:15 PM ET

INDIANAPOLIS — Fewer touches in fewer minutes playing alongside two legitimate franchise players, the scenario isn’t exactly conducive in posting individual numbers.

More than any 40-point game or 20-rebound night, part of the allure of setting up shop in South Beach for Chris Bosh was the shot at winning a title.

During his seven years in Toronto, Bosh helped lead the Raptors to two post-season appearances, but no playoff series wins.

Anything short of an appearance in the Eastern final would be viewed as a major disappointment for the Heat, which brings its marquee flavour to the Air Canada Centre on Wednesday night as Miami makes its first and only Toronto appearance.

What Miami has shown so far has been an inability to beat Boston, the reigning beasts of the East who arguably could have knocked off the Lakers in last spring’s NBA final had Kendrick Perkins not hurt his knee in Game 6.

In three games versus the Celtics, the Heat has lost each time, the most recent produced on Sunday when Bosh had one of his better outings.

“I’m still evolving, still trying to find that fine line between being aggressive and being a team player,” Bosh said as he began to count down his Toronto return.

“The focus is on the team, not just three guys or one guy.”

In Toronto, Bosh was the main guy, where the offence always ran through his hands.

With the Heat, Bosh is the third option behind Dwyane Wade and LeBron James.

When Wade is lighting it up, as he did Tuesday night in scoring 22 first-quarter points against the Pacers, James serves as the facilitator, while Bosh merely gets out of Flash’s way.

On Bosh’s first touch, he was forced to heave a late shot-clock attempt when James picked up his dribble near the sideline.

There would later come one of Bosh’s patented step-back jumpers and an open-court drive that featured a behind-the-back dribble he would finish with an and-one.

For Bosh, posting 20/10 games became the norm in Toronto, especially in his final two seasons.

In Miami, Bosh has produced one 30-point game and attempted more than 20 shots only twice.

Tuesday night, the Heat should have featured Bosh more, especially when the home side erased a 24-point lead.

Whether it’s Toronto or Indianapolis, the atmosphere that awaits the Heat’s arrival is electric.

No team is a better road draw in the NBA than Miami and no team is more disliked than the Heat.

“We’ve experienced some tough times from the crowd,” Bosh said. “It’s pretty much at every arena that we play. Guys (opponents) are extra motivated, fans are extra motivated, they either talk crap or cheer a little louder.”

And in a way, the reception Miami receives on the road has helped prepare Bosh for Wednesday night.

“I’m as ready as I’ll ever be,’’ he added. “Bring it on.”


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