|Eastern Conference - Finals - Best of 7 - Game 2 - MIA Leads 1-0|
|Last 5 Games||3-2||+1||4-1||2-3||91.6||43.0||41.3%||58.4||88.0||38.2||40.0%||48.2|
|Team Stats (All Games)||94.5||46.6||35-80||43.4%||7-20||34.1%||18-24||74.6%||55||13||20||20||7||15||6|
|vs opponents surrendering||97.9||49.4||37-81||45.4%||7-20||35.9%||17-22||75.3%||51||11||22||20||8||14||5|
|Team Stats (Road Games)||90.9||43.6||34-79||42.9%||6-20||31.5%||17-23||74.5%||53||12||20||20||7||16||6|
|Stats Against (All Games)||90.7||44.9||34-82||42.0%||6-17||32.9%||16-21||75.6%||49||11||19||22||8||13||5|
|vs opponents averaging||97.5||49.1||37-82||45.1%||7-21||36.0%||16-22||74.9%||50||11||22||20||8||14||5|
|Stats Against (Road Games)||91.8||44.6||35-81||42.9%||6-16||33.7%||16-22||76.1%||49||11||20||22||8||13||5|
|Last 5 Games||5-0||+4||3-2||4-1||100.8||47.0||50.3%||49.4||86.0||43.8||39.2%||47.6|
|Team Stats (All Games)||102.5||51.0||38-77||49.5%||9-22||39.0%||18-23||75.2%||47||8||23||19||9||13||5|
|vs opponents surrendering||97.8||49.1||37-82||45.3%||7-20||35.7%||17-22||75.1%||51||11||22||20||8||14||5|
|Team Stats (Home Games)||105.7||52.6||39-77||50.6%||8-21||39.8%||19-25||77.0%||47||8||23||19||9||13||6|
|Stats Against (All Games)||94.1||48.2||35-80||43.7%||7-22||34.5%||16-22||75.9%||48||11||20||21||8||15||3|
|vs opponents averaging||96.9||48.8||37-82||44.7%||7-20||35.5%||16-22||75.1%||51||11||22||20||8||14||5|
|Stats Against (Home Games)||94.9||48.6||36-80||44.4%||8-22||34.2%||16-22||75.4%||47||11||18||22||8||15||2|
|Average power rating of opponents played: INDIANA 95.6, MIAMI 95.2|
|4/14/2013||@ NEW YORK||80-90||L||3||L||193.5||U||28-65||43.1%||58||26||35-82||42.7%||38||11|
|5/5/2013||@ NEW YORK||102-95||W||5||W||181.5||O||37-76||48.7%||54||16||35-81||43.2%||42||10|
|5/7/2013||@ NEW YORK||79-105||L||6||L||183||O||30-66||45.5%||44||21||44-89||49.4%||47||6|
|5/16/2013||@ NEW YORK||75-85||L||5||L||181.5||U||25-69||36.2%||60||19||32-78||41.0%||47||10|
|5/24/2013||@ MIAMI|| || || || || || || || || || || || || || |
|5/26/2013||MIAMI|| || || || || || || || || || || || || || |
|5/28/2013||MIAMI|| || || || || || || || || || || || || || |
|5/24/2013||INDIANA|| || || || || || || || || || || || || || |
|5/26/2013||@ INDIANA|| || || || || || || || || || || || || || |
|5/28/2013||@ INDIANA|| || || || || || || || || || || || || || |
|INDIANA: GUARDS: The Pacers went 7-2 during the regular season and won a playoff series with GEORGE HILL in the starting five. He averaged 13.9 PPG and 5.3 APG in those regular season starts . . . PAUL GEORGE is a defensive stopper who is making strides on the offensive end. If he can find the touches, his scoring average will rise . . . D.J. AUGUSTIN has a skill set similar to Hill's. Maybe he'll push him for minutes later in the year, but more likely he'll shoot corner threes off the bench . . . GERALD GREEN is another athlete for their second unit . . . LANCE STEPHENSON has a chance for a bigger role, but he's been atrocious to this point of his career. FORWARDS: DANNY GRANGER's touches dropped last season, but his shot selection improved as last year went on. He'll continue to be a borderline All-Star . . . DAVID WEST's knee should be fully recovered from his torn ACL in late 2010-11. He was their best player in the postseason and should be a star this season with his ability to knock down shots . . . TYLER HANSBROUGH looks like he's settling in as a career second unit player. His lack of athleticism really limits his upside . . . JEFF PENDERGRAPH may or may not hold on to a roster spot in a 12th-man role. CENTERS: They're paying ROY HIBBERT like a franchise player, and he has the ability to control both ends of the court. The question is whether they'll now play him 30-plus minutes, or continue to use him as more of a part-time player . . . IAN MAHINMI should step in as a decent backup center . . . Rookie MILES PLUMLEE was a part-time player at Duke and is highly unlikely to contribute in his first season.|
|MIAMI: GUARDS: The regular season goal for DWYANE WADE is to just stay healthy. Even following knee surgery, he's still good enough to pile up numbers, but the minutes won't be there in the regular season . . . That's why the Heat brought in RAY ALLEN. He and Wade will share the floor at times, but Allen should primarily play off the bench. His role will be to knock down the wide-open threes Wade and LeBron James create . . . After all the big plays he made in the postseason, MARIO CHALMERS is entrenched as the starting point guard, despite being plagued by a bad hammy in the preseason . . . Super-quick NORRIS COLE looks like he'll become one of the NBA's better backup point guards . . . If he doesn't retire, the absurdly brittle MIKE MILLER will see limited regular-season minutes . . . TERREL HARRIS will likely make the team because he's willing to play defense. FORWARDS: While another title is their No. 1 priority, LeBRON JAMES has shown no need to rest during the regular season. He'll play full-time minutes and be in the thick of the MVP race . . . CHRIS BOSH remains integral to the offense with his ability to pull opposing bigs away from the basket. His stats don't reflect his actual value . . . SHANE BATTIER will continue to be a defensive specialist whose offensive role is limited to shooting open threes . . . UDONIS HASLEM is another guy who will get held back in the regular season. He should lead their low-post rotation . . . RASHARD LEWIS' knee problems have robbed him of athleticism . . . But Lewis should beat out fellow shooter JAMES JONES for a rotation spot . . . JARVIS VARNADO is a shot-blocking force with little to no offensive game. CENTERS: JOEL ANTHONY will continue to tag-team with Haslem in the middle. Anthony is an absolute negative on the offensive end, but he brings more size and shot-blocking than Haslem . . . DEXTER PITTMAN will be battling for a roster spot. Sexy Dexy has shown no signs of being an NBA-caliber player so far in his career . . . MICKELL GLADNESS is a better alternative than Pittman on both ends of the floor.|
|~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ PA SPORTSTICKER NBA PLAYOFF PREVIEW (INDIANA-MIAMI) ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ |
(Updates with quotes, details. With AP Photos.)
*Pacers-Heat Preview* =====================
By TIM REYNOLDS AP Basketball Writer
Indiana At Miami, Game Two, 8:30 p.m. EDT
MIAMI (AP) -- Losing a game at the final buzzer, no less than a playoff game on the road against the reigning NBA champion Miami Heat, would seem to have potential to demoralize the Indiana Pacers.
"Our belief," Pacers coach Frank Vogel said Thursday, "has strengthened."
Barely 12 hours after LeBron James scored on a drive as time expired in overtime to give the Heat a win in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals, the Pacers were more steeled than shaken when they arrived for practice at the arena where it all went awry in the series opener. The second-guessing of Vogel's decision to keep Roy Hibbert on the bench for the final play was still going strong, but the Pacers insisted that they're mentally fine.
A short memory would likely help Indiana now, especially with Game 2 of the series back in Miami on Friday night.
"Very encouraged," Vogel said. "Our belief in our ability to beat this team has strengthened after Game 1. Our familiarity in the playoffs, in the playoff series grows with each day, grows with each game, and there's a lot of things we can definitely do better."
And on that point, the Pacers and Heat are in total agreement.
For as intense and down-to-the-wire as Game 1 was, with 35 ties or lead changes over 53 scintillating minutes where neither team ever held more than a seven-point lead, both the Pacers and Heat are expecting Friday to simply be better.
Matching the level of drama may be difficult, but the actual level of play, they think, will improve. It's easy to see how that could be the case, after a series-opener where both teams were turnover-happy - 20 for Indiana, 21 for Miami, hardly the norm for either side - and play was at times choppy thanks in part to 58 personal fouls being called.
"We're going to play a lot better," Heat center Chris Bosh said after film and on-court work Thursday. "We've come to expect that of ourselves. We know that yesterday wasn't the championship effort that we need in order to win the series, let alone win the finals. We're going to have to do a much better job on defense and on offense to take care of the basketball, do a better job on the boards, do a better job of containing some of their actions."
For all the sensational statistical story lines that were born from Game 1 - James' 30-point, 10-rebound, 10-assist effort, Chris Andersen making all seven of his shots, David West and Hibbert combining for 20 field goals - the boxscore alone points to plenty of areas where things could get better for both sides on Friday night.
In Miami's case, key reserves Ray Allen, Shane Battier and Norris Cole combined to shoot 2 for 16. In Indiana's case, George - who finished with 27 points - only had two at halftime, and Lance Stephenson shot just 2 for 10.
"We can get better," James said. "I think both teams didn't play to the level that they're capable of playing at in Game 1. But both teams had a chance to win."
The Heat usually have more than a chance to win. They're now 46-3 in their last 49 games, and 28-0 when Andersen grabs at least four rebounds. Still, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra was pleading for more.
"We have to push to get to another level," Spoelstra said. "It was a very competitive game. Both teams were laying it all out there but we're trying to push to another level that we think we can get to - and we'll need to in this series.
"We have to continue to push forward and evolve. ... We have to play better in this series. In order to be able to win this series, we have to get to another level," Spoelstra said.
Another lineup - not another level - might have done wonders for the Pacers at the end of Game 1.
Vogel's decision to not have a 7-foot-2 shot-blocking machine like Hibbert in the game for the final play was still creating plenty of buzz on Thursday, though the second-guessing seemed to not be raining on Indiana's collective mood.
With Miami down by one, James took an inbounds pass from Shane Battier with 2.2 seconds left, drove past an overcommitted George and easily dropped a left-handed layup home as time expired. If Hibbert was in the game, odds are he would have been able to at least contest James at the rim. Without Hibbert, no one so much as seemed to even jump toward the final shot.
"I may have been able to get a hand on it," Hibbert said. "I may not have. He may have done something differently. Can't really think about that. You just have to move on."
When James scored, West turned and raised his arms a bit in clear disbelief. On Thursday, the Pacers' leader spoke about it all with a calm tone.
"I mean, hindsight is always 20-20," West said. "We know he wants to be out there on the floor. Looking back at it, probably should have been on the floor. Again, we still had the chance to make the play."
What's done is done, and Vogel said the second-guessing didn't bother him whatsoever. He's already moved on, and with good reason. The Pacers lost Game 1 of a second-round series in Miami last season, then took Game 2 and swiping home-court advantage away.
And he knows a Pacer win on Friday would change the complexion of this matchup as well.
"I don't think you can say you're the better team when that team has done what they've done," Vogel said. "But I believe we can beat them."
NOTES: Miami starting point guard Mario Chalmers said he's still dealing with a bruised left shoulder but expects to play in Game 2. Chalmers left in the third quarter on Wednesday after running into a hard screen set by Hibbert, though Spoelstra said he could have returned to the lineup if necessary. ... James headlined the All-NBA first team, collecting each of a possible 119 votes. George and Miami's Dwyane Wade were both on the third team.
|Last Updated: 12/19/2014 4:58:49 PM EST|