So it made perfect sense when Wade spoke like a grateful running back crediting his offensive linemen after Miami's 89-84 win over the Chicago Bulls. Wade scored a game-high 28 points on 11-for-21 shooting.
"The big guys did a great job of setting screens, allowing me to get downhill and be able to get into the paint," said Wade, who also grabbed seven rebounds and distributed five assists. "That's the biggest thing for our team. If we're getting in the paint, that allows us to be aggressive scoring the ball. That was the whole mindset."
Forward Chris Bosh scored 18 points and pulled down seven rebounds, and center Amar'e Stoudemire added eight points and 10 rebounds for Miami (24-21), which snapped a four-game losing streak.
Miami coach Erik Spoelstra praised his players for the hard-fought win. The Heat played without two starters, guard Goran Dragic and center Hassan Whiteside, who missed the game because of injuries.
"We had to gut it out," Spoelstra said. "There were several times where it could go either way, and it just shows you how competitive and tough it is to win on the road. You have to embrace that. It was a quality win."
Bulls center Pau Gasol scored 19 points and grabbed 17 rebounds for his 25th double-double of the season. Forward Nikola Mirotic contributed 15 points off the bench for Chicago (25-19).
Like the Heat, the Bulls played shorthanded for much of the game. Guard Derrick Rose left late in the second quarter because of injuries to his lower back and right hamstring. He scored four points on two-for-six shooting before guard Aaron Brooks replaced him.
Chicago coach Fred Hoiberg said Rose felt hamstring soreness and would be re-evaluated Tuesday morning. After Rose left the game, Hoiberg said, the Bulls' ball movement on offense seemed to lag.
"You have to find a way to fight through those times," Hoiberg said. "We didn't do that. We let a lot of little things bother us tonight."
The score was even at 84 when Bosh buried a jump shot from the top of the key with 1:02 remaining in the fourth quarter. After Gasol missed a fadeaway jump shot on the next possession, Wade drilled a 21-foot jump shot to increase Miami's lead to 88-84 with 22.9 seconds to go.
Bosh said he had no trouble trusting his mid-range jump shot with the game on the line.
"My confidence never wavers," Bosh said. "I'm always going to be aggressive, look for those spot-up shots, and if I have them, I'll live and die with it."
Earlier, a 3-pointer by Mirotic had given Chicago an eight-point lead with 10:24 left in the fourth quarter. The Heat responded with a 9-0 run to take a 74-73 lead with 7:13 remaining.
Brooks said the Bulls wasted an opportunity by allowing Miami to climb back into the game.
"There is just a consistent energy we need to have," said Brooks, who finished with 13 points and six assists.
Chicago entered the fourth quarter with a 68-61 advantage. Forward Tony Snell bounced back from a scoreless first half to tally six points during a 13-2 run to open the second half.
Miami led 49-47 at halftime after erasing a nine-point deficit early in the second quarter. Wade scored 10 points during a 19-6 run that put the Heat on top 39-35 with 6:06 to go in the first half.
A 13-2 run allowed the Bulls to grab a 23-18 lead after the first quarter. Gasol scored Chicago's first nine points and registered a double-double with 13 points and 10 rebounds in the first 12 minutes.
Spoelstra said he hoped the comeback win would provide a boost to Miami going forward.
"I don't want anybody to exhale right now," Spoelstra said.
NOTES: Heat PG Goran Dragic missed his seventh consecutive game because of a strained left calf. ... Bulls PG Kirk Hinrich missed his fifth game in a row because of a left quadriceps injury. ... Heat C Hassan Whiteside did not play for the second consecutive game because of a strained left hip. Whiteside, 26, is averaging 12.3 points and 11.2 rebounds this season. ... Bulls G E'Twaun Moore sat out because of a right hamstring strain. ... Heat F Luol Deng returned to the starting lineup after a one-game absence because of a right eye injury. ... Bulls F Mike Dunleavy told reporters Monday that he is targeting a February return. Dunleavy has not played this season after undergoing back surgery in September. ... Heat G Beno Udrih returned after missing four games because of a strained neck.