LeBron James got all the attention for running out of gas in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, but Dwyane Wade's burnout had the greatest impact on the Miami HEAT losing to the San Antonio Spurs.
This article uses the Estimated Wins Produced statistic created by sports economist David Berri. Average players increase a team's chance of winning 10% by producing 0.100 Estimated Wins per 48 minutes (Est.WP48) because an average NBA team produces a 0.500 winning percentage. See the HEAT Produced Page for more information.
Most Productive HEAT Players in Game 1 of 2014 NBA Finals
LeBron James and Chris Bosh were the most productive HEAT players in Game 1.
LeBron increased the HEAT's chance of winning by 20.9% with 25 points on 17 shots from the floor and 6 shots from the free throw line, 6 rebounds, 3 assists, 4 turnovers, 3 steals and 1 foul. LeBron was 3 times more productive than the average player in Game 1 with 0.304 est.WP48 despite suffering from muscle cramps.
Bosh increased the HEAT's chance of winning by 20.8% with 18 points on just 11 shots from the floor and 1 from the free throw line, 9 rebounds, 1 assist, 2 turnovers, 0 blocks and 2 fouls. Bosh was nearly 3 times as productive as the average player in Game 1 with 0.297 est.WP48, but his damage was done in the first 30 minutes when he was more than 4 times as productive as the average player with 0.412 est.WP48. In the last 18 minutes of the game, Bosh only produced 0.058 est.WP48. Maybe LeBron wasn't the only one that ran out of gas in Game 1.
Least Productive HEAT Players in Game 1 of 2014 NBA Finals
Dwyane Wade was the least productive HEAT player in Game 1. He decreased the team's chance of winning by 17% with just 19 points on 18 shots from the floor and 2 shots from the free throw line, just 3 rebounds, only 2 assists, 2 turnovers, 1 steal, 0 blocks and 4 fouls. Wade was nearly twice as productive as the average player in the 1st half of Game 1 with 0.179 est.WP48 that increased the team's chance of winning by 6%, but he was AWFUL in the 2nd half with -0.644 est.WP48.
In the end, it was Wade's least productive playoff game in the last 3 years. Prior to Game 1, Wade's least productive playoff game in the last 3 seasons was Game 2 of last year's NBA Finals. The HEAT were able to win that game, thanks to Mario Chalmers killing the Spurs in a 1-3 pick&roll with LeBron.
Unfortunately, Chalmers didn't kill the Spurs in Game 1. He killed the HEAT. 'Rio decreased the HEAT's chance of winning by 9% with 5 turnovers and 5 fouls in just 17 minutes. I said in the series preview that 'Rio needed to play well enough to keep Norris Cole on the bench for the HEAT to dominate the Spurs in this series. Cole played 29 minutes in Game 1 and produced a below average 0.070 est.WP48.
Of course, it's not Chalmers' fault that Cole got so many minutes in Game 1 but Coach Spoelstra's. Playing Cole so many minutes wasn't the worst move Spo made in Game 1. Playing Rashard Lewis nearly 31 minutes was the worst move by far. Lewis was the second least productive HEAT player in Game 1. He decreased the HEAT's chance of winning by 16% with just 50% shooting efficiency, 0 rebounds, 0 assists, 0 steals and 0 blocks while the Spurs' power forwards killed the HEAT for 2.3 points per shot in Game 1.
Shaved Monkey Nuts was no better when he replaced Lewis in Game 1. He decreased the HEAT's chance of winning by 9% in just 13 minutes.
2014 NBA Finals Game 1 Boxscore
The SPURS-GM1 tab in the spreadsheet below lists the estimated wins produced for Game 1 of the 2014 NBA Finals.