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Heat Vs. Knicks, 2012 NBA Playoffs Game 1: Heat Lead 54-31 As LeBron James Goes Off

The Miami Heat lead the New York Knicks by 23 points after the first half of Game 1 at American Airlines Arena. The Heat went on an incredible 20-2 run in the second quarter to blow it open after an intense first 15 minutes. LeBron James was fantastic during the run, getting into the lane and drawing fouls and hitting circus shots from the outside. James finished with 23 points in the first 24 minutes, including 11 of 14 from the charity stripe. Towards the end of the half, he took a hard screen from Tyson Chandler, who was whistled for a flagrant one on the play. James had to shake off the whiplash from the screen. An animated gif below:

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Analyst Jeff Van Gundy was unconvinced, calling it a flop by James and apoplectic that it was whistled as a flagrant. Video with Van Gundy's comments below:

No other Heat player was in double figures, but Dwyane Wade added eight points on four of seven from the floor. It was really intense right from the tip, as both teams ramped up and clearly put each other on notice that it was playoff basketball. Amare Stoudemire and Udonis Haslem got into a bit of a dust-up early on, which ended with some jawing but no physical altercation.

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Stick with this StoryStream for news and updates throughout the first round series between the Heat and Knicks. For more news, analysis, and discussion on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier. For the opponent's perspective throughout the series, check out Posting And Toasting, SB Nation's Knicks blog. And for all your news and notes on the playoffs matchups, visit SB Nation's dedicated NBA hub.

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Photographs by cstreet.us, thelastminute, turtlemom nancy , fesek, kthypryn, justinwright, sue_elias, pointnshoot, and scrapstothefuture used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.