The NBA Playoffs: Day 27: Big Two Hot 2 Handle

Dwyane Wade was the best player on the floor for Game 6
and the Heat are going to the Eastern Finals
(Photo by Getty Images) 
#Superman&Batman #dynamicduo
After Game 4, I wondered if Wade and James could sustain their dominant play to help the Heat advance to the Eastern Finals. They needed to play 2 more games of superb ball to help the Heat advance to the next round. Guess what? They achieved that feat with D-Wade averaging 33 ppg, 7 rpg, 4 apg with 62% shooting while LBJ got 32.7 ppg, 11 rpg and 8 apg. The Big 2 came to play in the last 3 games as the Heat went 3-0 to win the series convincingly. Wade was masterful in providing the scoring in the first half as he exploded for 26 points (20 in the 2nd) while LeBron put the dagger to the Pacers in the last two minutes of the game as he made three straight baskets. The Pacers could not overcome the barrage of attacks from Wade as he split double teams and sliced pick and roll rotations. The Pacers even resorted to removing Roy Hibbert from the floor because he could not defend Wade through screens and defensive switches. LeBron started the attack during Game 4 and he is still their best player but if D-Wade plays like the 2nd best player in the NBA, the Heat are unstoppable.

#bankshot #onfire
The best thing to happen to the Heat and Wade was that abysmal Game 3 (5 points, 2-13). D-Wade had his knee drained afterwards and things got so much better. Hard to believe that game was only a week ago. Dwayne Wade blitzed the Pacers in the next 3 games with an astounding 62% shooting from an array of tough shots that ranged from floaters, fadeaways, layups and jumpers. His free throw shooting was still wonky but he made up for it with incredible shot after shot. There's no one in the NBA better than Wade when it comes to using the glass. He made 17-25 shots in Game 6 and probably half of those went in with the use of the bank shot. The bank shots are part of his repertoire and Wade showed us a full display of his talents. He looked like 2006 Finals MVP, D-Wade out there as he slashed to the hoop and split double teams with ease. Wade was on fire and everyone on the floor knew it including LBJ who played a supporting role with "only" 28 points 6 rebounds and 7 assists.

LeBron and the Heat celebrate their series win vs the Pacers.
They will face Boston or Philly staring Monday.
(Photo by Getty Images 
#StepUp #shorthanded
The Big 2 have been amazing in the last 3 games but without the help from their bench and supporting cast, the Heat could still be playing a Game 7. Udonis Haslem was suspended for Game 6 but that did not matter as the Heat got a good performance from Mike Miller (12 points, 4-7 treys) and Joel Anthony provided superb defense upfront. Would you believe that the Heat bench outscored the Pacers 19-13? Mario Chalmers was impressive as well with his 15 points. The role players have stepped up in the last 3 games with Haslem scoring in Game 4, Battier in Game 5 and now Miller in Game 6. If the Heat can get consistency from their role players in the Eastern Finals, it wont matter who they play (Celtics/Sixers) and it wont matter if Bosh plays or not. Now, the NBA Finals is a different matter because the Heat have NO chance it Bosh sits or is hobbled immensely.  

#GoneFishing #turnovers
The Pacers fought well but they were erratic in Game 6 with 22 turnovers that lead to 26 points for the Heat.  The Heat only had 10 turnovers that gave the Pacers 13 points. Some of the turnovers were forced by the great defense of Miami but the Pacers committed unnecessary technical fouls from taunting and thrash talking too much. Those were just dumb and stupid. Still, the Pacers could end up being the 2nd best team in the East after the Heat since the Bulls are reeling without Derrick Rose and the Celtics are old and weary. The Pacers will have most of their starters together for next year with Roy Hibbert being a restricted free agent and the Pacers will probably match any offers presented to their center.

#Tweets/Quotes of the Night
"Chris Bosh is an awesome basketball player, but when he goes down, that just means more touches for LeBron and Wade. That's not exactly an advantage."- Frank Vogel, Pacers coach

"After being down 2-1, Dwyane Wade and LeBron James averaged 33.0 pts and 32.7 pts, respectively, to clinch the series." -Tom Haberstroh @tomhaberstroh, ESPN & Heat Index

#Stats #news

  • Wade and LeBron outscored the Pacers's starters in the last 3 games, 197-184
  • 26 points in the first half for Wade tied a Heat record with Tim Hardaway
  • 10 turnovers for the Heat is the fewest of the playoffs
  • Wade found his shooting stroke at the line 7-8
  • Game 7 of Sixers-Celtics in on Saturday at Boston
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