The NBA: 2013 ECF: Pacers Burn Heat

Coach Vogel learned his mistake. Roy Hibbert stayed in the game
during the clutch and the Pacers tied the series at 1-1
(Image from: Lynne Sladky/AP)
#GoldSwagger # @Hoya2aPacer #Pacers
Let's face it. Miami is LUCKY to be tied at 1-1 as they go to Indiana for Games 3 and 4. The Pacers were just 2.2 seconds away from a commanding 2-0 lead. Indiana has been in control majority of the time in both games. Indy started hot to begin the game at 10-0 and they even had a lead of 13 points while the Heat could only muster a 4-point lead late in the 4th. The Pacers are simply playing better on offense and defense. They are sharing the ball more (18 assists to 14 from Miami), shooting better from the field and rebounding better. Their defense limited Miami to below 47% shooting and they defended LeBron well when he made 2 turnovers in a span of 30 seconds. Their starting 5 all scored in double digits including a monster game from Roy Hibbert (29 points & 10 rebounds) who dominated Chris Bosh and whoever else tried to guard him. Indiana is shooting more FTs and making them at a higher clip while Miami has struggled from the foul line and the tree-point arc. The Pacers made adjustments (more Hibbert touches in the post, more active Hill, less points from Birdman) while the Heat regressed on offense and defense. Miami relied more on isolations and jumpers instead of attacking the paint. Adjustments were not made by Coach Spo as Allen, Cole and Battier gave next to nothing while Mike Miller and Rashard Lewis continued to sit on the bench.

#turnovers #careless #Big3?
LeBron James did not get a triple-double in Game 2. He only had 3 assists and 5 turnovers. His teammates were not doing their jobs and their shots were not falling. A lot of credit goes to the Pacers for bothering Miami but the Heat supposedly has the better players and deeper bench. So far, none of those have been true after 2 games. Dwyane Wade continues to struggle scoring in the playoffs. He had 14 points and scored ZERO points in the 4th after playing virtually the whole quarter. Wade is averaging 13.7 points and shooting 47% in the playoffs. I know he is injured but if he decides to play, he must make sure that he is positively contributing to his team's success and not hampering them. As for Chris Bosh, he more than doubled his rebounding numbers from last game. Bosh had 5 boards compared to 2 from the first game. Miami got beaten on the glass again by 7 rebounds. The Heat Big3 is not playing to their potential and only LBJ has produced. James carried the Heat with his 36 points but he had 2 costly turnovers during the clutch. They were "careless" mistakes and unforced. It would have been a lot better if LBJ forced the situation and hoisted a contested shot. At least Miami would get a shot attempt or maybe a foul call. James did not get a rest during the 2nd half and maybe fatigue played a role in his miscues.

#George&George #xfactor
George Hill scored 5 points in Game 1 and shot poorly. He played much better in Game 2 as he finished with 18 points on 6-8 shooting including making 4 clutch free throws to preserve the win for Indiana. Hill outscored Chalmers, Cole and Allen (they combined for 15 points). Paul George had a solid game with 22 points and 6 assists. The key stat: only 2 turnovers and he fronted LBJ on defense during the last minute of regulation. The Pacers are getting contributions from their starters while the Heat is having problems getting consistent production from players not named LeBron. Miami desperately needs someone else to step up and help LBJ. The Heat CANT expect to win Game 3 and this series with LeBron doing all the heavy lifting. Someone else needs to rebound (Come on Bosh! You can do better than 3.5 rebounds per game) and score on offense when open shots are there (Battier, Cole & Allen need to wake up). Wade cant continue to be the 4th or 5th best player on the court after James, Hibbert, George, Hill, and West/Bosh. Last year, D-Wade exploded from Games 4-6 and Miami needs some kind of spark from Wade if they want to steal one in Indy.

#Game3 #Preview 
The Pacers are going to Indiana where they are unbeaten after 6 home games in the playoffs. Miami was the best road team during the regular season and they are 4-0 on the road during the first two rounds. The Heat needs at least a split if they still want to defend their title in June. The Pacers know their strengths and they are not shying away from pounding the ball in the post and attacking the glass. Hibbert has stayed away from foul trouble while Miami has been racking up more fouls. If the Pacers continue to shoot more FTs and dominate the boards, Miami will probably be looking at a Game 3 loss. The Heat needs to make adjustments on their rotation especially by giving LeBron a rest in the 2nd half. They cant expect him to be fresh and at his best by playing 45 minutes while doing everything from guarding West to blocking Hibbert's shots. Wade has to be more aggressive and decisive if he is playing. He cannot be invisible in the 4th quarter again. If Ray Allen, Norris Cole and Shane Battier are not producing, Miami should not hesitate to play Mike Miller or Rashard Lewis. They have a deep bench with veterans who are ready to play so why not use them? Miller played 3 minutes in Game 2 and scored 3 points and was a +3.

#Stats #News
  • Both teams had 40 points in the paint
  • Indy is shooting close to 80% on FTs while Miami is hovering at 65%
  • Battier has not made a FG in 2 games
  • Paul George was +17 while the Big 3 combined for -21
  • West and Hibbert combined 18-20 on FTs
  • Allen missed 2-4 FTs
#Player of the Night
Roy Hibbert (Pacers) - 29 points, 10 rebounds, 10-15 FGs, 9-10 FTs  

#Highlights of the Night
Paul George poster!
Ball Dont Lie

#Tweets of the Nights

On James' welcoming of George into the elite, the young Pacers star couldn't hide his appreciation. "That was a moment for me," George said.

Roy Hibbert: "They may be the defending champs, but we're coming for them."

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