In a pivotal game three of the Eastern Conference Finals, the Miami Heat, behind 26 points from Lebron James, pulled out a 99-87 home victory against the Indiana Pacers to take a 2-1 series lead.
The Heat did not start the game off well at all, shooting just 2-10 from the field with 6 turnovers and found themselves down 17-4 early. Miami was able to cut the lead to seven thanks to a 9-2 run to end the first quarter.
However, just like the first quarter, Miami was able to go on a big run and cut the deficit. Indiana turned the ball over more than 10 times in the quarter, this let Miami end the half on an 18-5 run but trailed 43-38. This was their lowest scoring half this season.
Miami took their first lead 52-51 at the 7:35 mark in the third quarter thanks to making their eighth straight shot via a fast break dunk by Lebron. This would not have happened if Dwyane Wade hadn’t come out and set the court on fire. Wade finished with 23 points, and actually made TWO threes in the second half.
The tide began to turn Miami’s way in the third, guys like Stephenson and Paul George along with Hibbert were all completely exhausted by this point. Miami had a seven point lead going into the fourth, after that, it was over.
Ray Allen had not made a shot in the first three quarters, he then preceded to put Indiana to sleep in the fourth. Allen came off the bench and made FOUR corner threes, also known as “Ray’s Corner” to pull away a 15 point lead late and seal the win. Something that only the best shooter to ever live could do.
Miami shot 56% against arguably the best defense in the game. As I said earlier, even Wade hit a couple threes. Seriously, when does that happen?
No Pacer scored 20 points. Paul George scored 17 points for Indiana, shooting 5 for 13 in his return after being concussed late in Game 2. Roy Hibbert scored 16 points, David West added 13 and Lance Stephenson had 10 for the Pacers. Indiana ended up with 19 turnovers. Even though Miami had 15, it hurt the Pacers vitally.
The winner of a game three in a series split 1-1 wins the series over 76% of the time. Advantage: Miami.
- Justin Hodges is a Staff Writer for ProSportsExtra.comĀ