The Miami Heat rediscovered its offensive punch and beat the Indiana Pacers 114-96 on Sunday to take a 2-1 lead in the NBA Eastern Conference finals. LeBron James profited from a tactical switch,scored 22 points and got plenty of help as the Heat reclaimed the home-court advantage they lost two nights earlier.
Dwyane Wade had 18 points,and Udonis Haslem added 17.
I made a conscious effort to get down in the post tonight,to put pressure on their defense, James said.
James rebounded from the two late turnovers that cost Miami in Game 2 by scoring 22 points,grabbing four rebounds and dishing out three assists. Hours after Dwyane Wade learned he would only be tagged with a flagrant foul from Game 2 and not a suspension,he finished with 18 points,eight assists and four rebounds. Chris Bosh added 15 points and three rebounds and all five Miami starters reached double figures.
The move allowed Miami to outscore Indiana 56-32 in the paint.
Perhaps that should be expected from a team with so much scoring punch and that has won 23 of its last 24 on the road,but there were more surprising statistics in other areas.
The biggest difference between the first two games and Sundays comfortable win was what James work on the inside.
It was something we wanted to get to just to help settle us and get into a more aggressive attack, coach Erik Spoelstra said. Now,with Game 4 scheduled for Tuesday,its the Pacers turn to adjust.