The NBA: 2013 ECF: Pacer Power!

Lance Stephenson made big shots in Game 4 as he outplayed Dwyane Wade
(Image from: Michael Conroy/AP)

#GoldSwagger #PacerPower
The series is tied again and it's down to a best of 3. The Pacers started strong with an 11-0 run and they led for most of Game 4. Miami's biggest lead was just 6 points which was significantly lower than their explosion in Game 3. Indiana held Miami to below 40% shooting and the Pacers dominated paints in the paint (50-32) and rebounds (49-30). In other words, the Heat got killed in areas where they have glaring weaknesses. The Pacers have the size and length advantage and they definitely pounded the Heat. Chris Bosh was a non-factor again while Chris Andersen remained perfect in this series because he did not attempt a shot in 19 minutes. The Pacers had another balanced scoring effort with all starters getting at least 12 points and they received a great game from Stephenson. The Pacers managed to limit LeBron's post game as LBJ settled for long jumpers and contested fadeaway shots. Overall, the Pacers played with more intensity and more desperation. If that continues, we just might see Spurs-Pacers next week.

#Roy #Lance #BlueCollar
Lance Stephenson had a solid year as a full-time starter. In the playoffs, he upped his production in points and rebounds. I picked him as the X-Factor in this series but I never imagined him to thoroughly outplay and somewhat dominate Dwyane Wade in a game. But that happened in Game 4 which Miami lost. Lance attacked the paint more ferociously than Wade and he even made jumpers (including a miraculous rainbow three) over Wade. On a couple of plays, Stephenson initiated a 1-man fast break attack with him actually making the shot. He was simply that good. Lance scored 20 points on 9-15 shooting while Wade struggled yet again with 16 points on 5-15 FGs. Meanwhile, Roy Hibbert did everything for the Pacers as he promised. He limited Haslem, Birdman and Bosh to just 13 points total. In Game 3, they torched him for 41 points. BTW, Roy also had more rebounds than the 3 of them combined: 12-7. Hibbert was pivotal in the 4th quarter with a couple of offensive boards including an And-1 with over a minute left to push the lead to 5 points. Honorable mentions go to David West who had another double-double and George Hill who had 19 points on 9-10 FTs to go with 5 boards and 6 assists.

#LetsGoHeat #NoExcuses #TeamEffort
The Heat finished with just 6 turnovers for the game but 2 of them happened during the last minute which was similar to their Game 2 loss in Miami. One was an offensive foul/illegal screen called on LBJ which was his sixth while the next turnover was a travel on Wade during a step-back three. Miami CANNOT blame the referees for this loss. The officiating was terrible for the whole game and calls or missed calls affected both teams. They lost this game because their rebounding effort was abysmal and because Wade/Bosh played horrible yet again. D-Wade shot below 50% from the field again and this time, Lance Stephenson outplayed him. Wade has an excuse due to injury but if he is playing, then he should be productive. It is not acceptable for role players to have better games than him no matter how hurt he is. As for Bosh, Hibbert has utterly dominated their match-up. That is somewhat expected but still not acceptable. Bosh needs to step up since they cannot win without him. If his shot aint falling, how about attacking the paint or getting more rebounds? Lastly, LeBron is not blameless in this loss. LBJ needs to constantly be in the post to force the Pacers to adjust their defense and send help. James must not settle for threes and jumpers.

#Game5 #Preview #Adjustments
With the series tied at 2, the winner of Game 5 wins the series about 80% of the time. This happened 4 times this postseason (Spurs-Warriors, Grizzlies-Clippers, Pacers-Hawks, Warriors-Nuggets) and the team with the 3-2 edge finished the series in 6 games. Miami needs to make major adjustments on how they can narrow the rebounding gap vs Indiana. The Heat CANNOT win if Ray Allen leads them in rebounding with 7 while Bosh only gets 3 (he has 13 total boards in 4 games). Miami also needs more production from others, similar to what they got in Game 3. They have to get Wade and Bosh more involved in the offense (23 points total) because it's apparent that James cannot carry all of them in this series. LBJ should also go back to the post and attack instead of settling for jumpers and fadeaway shots. As for the Pacers, they succeeded in limiting Haslem (6 pts) and Birdman (zero) while Roy Hibbert and David West continued to wreak havoc on the glass and in the paint. The Bruising Bigmen both had double-doubles again and they racked up a bunch of fouls from the Heat. The Pacers shot more FTs and and had a higher FG% which are keys to beating the Heat.

#Player of the Night
Roy Hibbert (Pacers) - 23 points, 12 rebounds, 6 offensive boards on 10-16 FGs 

#Highlight of the Night
Lance with a ridiculous three
LBJ reaching the summit

#Tweets of the Nights

Roy Hibbert was best player on the court tonight. When he unleashes, he's unstoppable.

Officiating will be a big talking point but the Heat lost lead & probably game because Pacers killed them on offensive boards in 4Q

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