Heat shoot for sweep of Bucks

Published April 28, 2013

| Sports Network

The Miami Heat might need to have some brooms handy Sunday afternoon when they go for the sweep in their first-round Eastern Conference playoff series with the Milwaukee Bucks.

Armed with a 3-0 series lead, the defending NBA champions will try to make quick work of the Bucks at the Bradley Center. Miami has won the three games in this series by an average of 16 points.

"Now, we have to focus on closing this series out," said Dwyane Wade. "This team is going to give us everything they have on Sunday."

The Heat are no strangers to this position. In the first round of the playoffs the last two seasons, Miami went up 3-0, but could not close the door in Game 4.

"We've got to get over the hump," Wade said. "It's a different year. We've got a challenge ahead of us. Hopefully, we're ready for that challenge."

History may be the only challenge for the Heat.

In Game 3, the Bucks led by two at the half, but Miami blew Milwaukee out in the second half. The Heat won the second half, 56-41.

The Heat were led by Ray Allen, who had 23 points on 8-for-14 shooting and 5- for-8 from beyond the arc. Allen became the all-time postseason leader in 3- pointers made, passing Reggie Miller.

"We don't take him for granted," said Miami coach Erik Spoelstra about Allen. "To have somebody of his caliber and his resume coming off the bench is significant."

LeBron James had 22 points, six assists and five rebounds. Chris Bosh registered a double-double with 16 points and 14 rebounds. Wade, who is battling knee pain, shot 1-for-12 for four points, but handed out 11 assists.

The Bucks can't seem to sustain the runs from the Heat. Not many teams did during the regular season, but now Milwaukee is on the brink of playoff elimination.

"Things can quickly get out of hand," said Milwaukee center Larry Sanders. "You learn you can't make mistakes, especially in situations like this."

Six Milwaukee players scored in double figures on Thursday, led by 16 from Sanders, who also pulled down 11 rebounds. Ersan Ilyasova, Luc Mbah a Moute, Brandon Jennings, J.J. Redick and Mike Dunleavy also cracked the 10-point mark.

Absent from that list was Monta Ellis, who only had seven points.

No team in NBA postseason history has come back to win a series down 0-3. How do the Bucks handle Game 4?

"Stay positive, keep fighting," Sanders said.

If the Bucks win on Sunday, Game 5 will take place Tuesday in Miami.

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