HEAT Defeat Pacers 124-115 to Take Commanding 3-0 Series Lead

Bam Adebayo
Photo Credit: Ashley Landis-Pool/Getty Images
by Joe Beguiristain
HEAT.com

Another playoff game against the Pacers, another dub.

While Indiana gave Miami its best shot and nearly came all the way back from 20 down, the HEAT made enough plays late to come away with a 124-115 victory Saturday afternoon at AdventHealth Arena in Orlando to take a commanding 3-0 series lead in the Eastern Conference First Round.

Let’s get right to it, shall we?

1. Bam Gets It Done Late

Although Bam Adebayo made some plays here and there through the first three quarters, he didn’t really impact the game as much as he’s used to.

Then the fourth quarter came around.

After taking JaKarr Sampson off the dribble a few times and finishing off the catch against Myles Turner, he came away with the best sequence of the day with two huge offensive rebounds on the same possession that eventually turned into two free throws.

What effort.

When it was all said and done, Adebayo tallied 22 points (a team-high 11 in the fourth) on 7-of-11 shooting from the field and 8-of-9 from the line, a team-high 11 rebounds, five assists, one steal and a plus-eight rating.

2. Jimmy Does His Thing

As usual, Jimmy Butler was in attack mode from the very beginning and put a ton of pressure on the Pacers.

Naturally, that entailed countless trips to the free-throw line and big-time defensive plays like this block on T.J. Warren late in the fourth:

Playoff Jimmy, y'all.

In total, Butler amassed a team-high 27 points (nine in the fourth) on 5-of-16 shooting from the field and 17-of-20 shooting from the charity stripe, eight boards, four assists, a team-high three steals (tied with Goran Dragić) and that block above.

3. Dragić Cooks Indy Early On

After going off in the second half of Games 1 and 2, Dragić got his work done early in this one.

Thanks to his usual balanced attack of catch-and-shoot treys and aggressive takes to the rack, the Slovenian led all players with 18 points at the break.

Among them, this buzzer-beating layup gave the HEAT 74 points, which was the most in any half in postseason franchise history:

Yes, you read that right.

As the game progressed, Dragić started to cool down a bit, but defensively he made things tough on Malcolm Brogdon down the stretch.

The Dragon finished with 24 points on 8-of-17 shooting, including 5-of-10 from deep, a team-high six assists, a team-high three steals (tied with Butler) and two rebounds.

Other Takeaways:

-Once again, Tyler Herro looked cool, calm and collected off the bench.

Not only did he score eight quick points upon checking in, but he also hit this big three in the fourth:

He’s just never fazed by the moment.

Herro ended up with a playoff career-high 20 points on 6-of-12 shooting from the field, including 3-of-6 from distance, and a perfect 5-of-5 from the line, three rebounds, one assist and a plus-eight rating.

Game Notes:

-In addition to setting the postseason franchise record for points in a half, Miami also set the team playoff record for threes in a half with 11.

-Kyle Alexander, KZ Okpala (Personal Reasons), Chris Silva and Gabe Vincent (Right Shoulder Sprain) were inactive.

Looking Ahead:

-The HEAT will aim to sweep the series on Monday at 6:30PM. You can catch all the action on FOX Sports Sun and TNT.

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