Game Rewind: Pacers 97, Heat 93, Game 2
Friday, May 24th, 2013 at 8:30 PM EDT at American Airlines Arena
Game Rewind: Pacers 97, Heat 93, Game 2
Scott Agness | May 24, 2013
LeBron James had the last word in Game 1, laying the ball in with his left hand as time expired for an overtime win. On Friday night, and with Roy Hibbert manning the lane, the Pacers ensured that James couldn’t repeat himself. Indiana’s defense, which held Miami to just one field goal in the final 6:09, intercepted two consecutive passes by James with less a minute to play to hold on for a 97-93 victory at American Airlines Arena.
With the win, the Pacers return to Indianapolis with the series tied at one game apiece – just like last postseason. Game 3 is on Sunday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
The Pacers hit on nine of their first ten shots to take the first double-digit lead of the series, 24-12, including 10 consecutive points with all five starters contributing. LeBron James was responsible for 12 of Miami’s 22 first-quarter points and they used a 10-4 spurt to draw within six as the opening period concluded.
Emotions were high in the second, where the Pacers were whistled for four personal fouls and two technical fouls in a span of 1:38. Once the Pacers stopped worrying about the officials, they rolled off a 14-1 run while the Heat went nearly five minutes without a field goal. The Pacers pulled ahead by as many as 13 points, led by Hibbert, who scored 19 of his team-high 29 in the opening half. But the Heat once again closed the quarter strong, running off seven points in a row before the half. The Pacers shot 55 percent in the first half and had the edge in every statistical category, but because of their poor finish to the half, their lead had shrunk down to just six points.
The Heat came out with a renewed focus in the second half, with an emphasis on penetrating rather than settling for jumpers. They tallied 16 points in the paint in the third after just totaling just 14 in the first two quarters combined. Following a couple mismanaged possessions by the Pacers, the Heat knotted the game at 60 via a 10-2 run. As the third quarter wound down, Paul George had a spectacular sequence, beating James off the dribble and then a powerful slam on 6-foot-11 Chris Andersen for a three-point play. Bu the Pacers slipped up on defense and allowed a deep 3-pointer by James at the buzzer, which trimmed their advantage to two.
Capitalizing off two missed free throws by Hill, the Heat, with James playing at an elite level, went on a 7-0 spurt to take an 88-84 lead. But the defending champions would make only one more shot all game. That’s when Indiana’s defense locked in and forced the Heat to go over rather than around them.
With less than a minute to play, Hill redeemed himself at the line by hitting a pair of free throws to put the Pacers up two. David West then deflected and retrieved a pass sent by James, who threw it away on back-to-back possessions. Hill sank two more foul shots and Chris Bosh's 25-foot shot was off the mark.
Inside the Numbers
Roy Hibbert had his best offensive game in the NBA, scoring a playoff career-high 29 points (on 10-of-15 shooting) and grabbing 10 rebounds for his fourth double-double of these playoffs.
Paul George scored 22 points, his eighth time recording at least 20 points this postseason. After going 2-of-9 in Game 1, George Hill contributed 18 points hitting on 6-of-8 field goals, but nothing bigger than his four free throws to end the game. David West had 13 and Lance Stephenson finished with 10 points, eight rebounds and five assists.
Miami’s ‘Big Three’ all scored in double figures, led by LeBron James’ 36 points – his highest postseason output of the season. Chris Bosh had 17 points and Dywane Wade added 14.
Shooting exactly 50 percent for the game, the Pacers improve to 13-2 this season, including 3-0 in the postseason, when they make at least half their shots.
The Heat have only lost five times in their last 51 games and two of those losses have been to the Pacers.
"He played one of the best basketball games I’ve ever seen anybody play. We were able to make a couple plays late in the game…It's near-impossible [to stop him]. I'm not really sure how we did it other than exhibiting great will." – Frank Vogel on LeBron James’ late turnovers
"There's only one person scarier than him, and that's God." – George Hill on LeBron James
“We stressed containment and we learned from Game 1. Paul [George] did a good job of keeping him in front and we shrunk the lane and we said we’re just not going to give him any easy shots. Luckily, David [West] was able to get a hand on some of those passes and George [Hill] hit some real big free throws.” – Roy Hibbert on the final two plays
"Take nothing away from their big three, but we'll take a big five any day. That's what we have." – Paul George
"We're not going to back down. They could be the champs, but we're coming for them." – Roy Hibbert
“We realize we haven’t done anything. We felt good about where we were coming into this game and I just thought we completed a few more plays than we did in Game 1.” – David West
Stat of the Game
Indiana’s starters accounted for 92 of its 97 points (94.8 percent).
- Sam Young, Tyler Hansbrough and associate head coach Brian Shaw were each whistled for technical fouls.
- Sam Young sprained his left ankle in the third quarter – the same one that sidelined him earlier this season.
- Rather than flying home tonight and not getting back until after 4 AM, the Pacers are staying in Miami and will practice there before returning to Indianapolis on Saturday afternoon.
- For the second straight game, the Pacers wore their gold alternate uniforms.
Game 3 at the Fieldhouse is on Sunday at 8:30 PM EST.
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