It does not have to be pretty. Wins can be extremely ugly.
So after the Pacers won by quickening the pace it makes the Heat would even the series by slowing things down. Huh?
The Pacers and Heat played each other within 20 points the entire game. No team took more than an eight-point lead into the fourth quarter. LeBron James took over the fourth quarter in a subtle but obvious way. I guess that is really contradictory. This game was full of those.
James finished with 22 points, seven rebounds and six assists, doing a lot of work in the fourth quarter to lead Miami to an 87-83 win in Indiana and a tie in the Eastern Conference Finals. Dwyane Wade did a lot of the heavy lifting offensively with 23 points. It was the Heat’s defense that was the difference this time around as they started flying around and pressuring the Pacers with an urgency that was missing in Game One.
It was not all there though. Miami had to fight to get back into this game and tie the series.
All five Pacers starters scored in double figures with Lance Stephenson scoring 25 points to lead the way. Stephenson was aggressive and took advantage of the moments when the Heat’s defense was lax — including a tip in with 0.1 seconds left to beat the halftime buzzer.
Miami will have to find a way to keep their energy up. That was the big message as the team leaves Indiana. The Pacers are here to play. Miami has to be ready to match them.