James came in averaging 29.9 points at the current Madison Square Garden, trailing only Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant among opponents who played here at least 10 games. Wade was just behind in fourth with 27.3 per game.
Yet the superstars each started 1 of 6 from the field, James seeming particularly frustrated with the officials and even teammates. Once a fan favorite at Madison Square Garden — Knicks fans hoped he would sign here as a free agent in 2010 — he was booed, mocked and cursed by the crowd Thursday.
He eventually would get on the roll he is accustomed to here.
The Heat won the opener by 33 points and took Game 2 104-94 on Monday, when the Knicks' biggest problems came after the game. Stoudemire punched a fire extinguisher case in the arena and badly cut his left hand, needing surgery Tuesday to repair a muscle. He sat on bench with his arm in a sling.
Steve Novak started for him but took only two shots and missed them both.
Notes: Chandler was honored in a pregame ceremony for winning the NBA's Defensive Player of the Year award. The Knicks also held a moment of silence for former coach and scout Andrew "Fuzzy" Levane, who died earlier this week at 92.
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