Well, the Indiana Pacers couldn’t seal the deal with this one, and let the duo of Lebron James and Dwayne Wade take over in the second half. Hard to believe this Pacers team led most of the first half and much into that second half. But things turned around in that fourth quarter.
That fourth quarter saw the Pacers only put up 16 points, and 1 point down the last five minutes of the game. Not exactly the way you want to finish a game. It almost felt like the first game of the first round, where they couldn’t score against the Orlando Magic. But we saw the Pacers turn things around in that series, so maybe that could happen in this one.
It’s going to be important to start and finish well. The Pacers started off very well in this game as they jumped out 11-4 and led that first quarter 23-20. A good second quarter put the Pacers up six points.
But the third quarter, where the Pacers normally excel saw them get outscored 28-22. Then we saw what happened in that fourth. There’s plenty to learn from this game, like Danny Granger will have to figure out how to open up his offensive game as he only had 7 points on 1-10 shooting. Paul George struggled as well, and still doesn’t seem to be anywhere near what he was as he got 6 points.
Roy Hibbert and David West each got 17 points, so that might be a point of emphasis for game two. Pound the ball inside to the big men, especially if Chris Bosh is out for the next game or so. Let Hibbert take advantage against Haslem because he should be able to do that. If the Heat double team, then someone is open, and will need to hit shots.
I do think the Pacers make this a much more competitive series than people are expecting. Game two is important for the Pacers to get the win, so they can head home for a game on Thursday. Game two is Tuesday, and one day separates game three. It would be nice to have some momentum for that home date. This is one that got away, but still think this series will be a fight.