MIAMI - Dwyane Wade was ailing, so LeBron James and Chris Bosh more than picked up the slack.
Then Wade found his groove at the perfect time, and the Miami Heat, the team put together solely to win championships, moved one emotional win away from the NBA Finals.
James scored 35 points, Bosh added 22, and the Heat overcame an early 11-point deficit to beat the Chicago Bulls, 101-93, in overtime on Tuesday night, taking a three-games-to-one lead in the Eastern Conference finals.
Game 5 is Thursday in Chicago, when the Heat can wrap up their first finals trip since 2006.
Wade went scoreless for nearly 33 straight minutes before making a jumper with 2 minutes, 8 seconds left to help Miami keep the lead. And after James made a contested jumper with 29 seconds left for a six-point lead, Wade soared to block Derrick Rose's layup from out of almost nowhere on the next Chicago possession.
At long last, it was over.
Bosh scored the first four points of overtime, and the Heat - now 8-0 at home in the playoffs - never trailed in the extra session. James closed it with two free throws with 1.4 seconds left, his 12th and 13th of the night, all without a miss. Bosh was 10 for 11 from the line, and Miami outscored Chicago by 32-17 in that department.
The Heat made their final 24 free throws.
Rose scored 23 points for the Bulls, who got 20 apiece from Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer. Chicago has lost three straight games for the first time this season.
Rose had a chance to win the game at the end of regulation and tie the series, but his shot from 17 feet failed to even hit the rim.
Players union cries foul
The NBA Players Association filed an unfair labor charge against the league with the National Labor Relations Board, a move it hopes could block a lockout it says owners want.
The union says the NBA hasn't bargained in good faith, has made financial demands without offering concessions to the players, and has bypassed the union to deal directly with players.
The NBA and players are trying to reach a deal for a new collective bargaining agreement before the June 30 expiration of the current one. They plan to meet early next month during the NBA Finals, but a work stoppage remains a possibility.
The charges against the league include making "takeaway" demands that the NBA knows are not acceptable to the union, engaging in classic "take it or leave it" bargaining intended to delay action, and refusing to provide relevant financial information.