Regular Season Series (Game 3 of 3)

Series starts 11/22

Game 1: Saturday, November 22nd
Game 2: Friday, January 30th
Game 3: Wednesday, March 25th

Heat 88

(38-33, 13-22 away)

Pacers 90

(30-42, 20-14 home)

    Coverage: SUNHD

    7:00 PM ET, March 25, 2009

    Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN

    1 2 3 4 T
    MIA 24 25 19 2088
    IND 27 21 19 2390

    Top Performers

    Mia: U. Haslem 18 Pts, 14 Reb, 1 Ast

    Ind: D. Granger 28 Pts, 4 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Stl, 2 Blk

    Pacers hold Wade in check to escape Heat

    Associated Press

    INDIANAPOLIS -- Indiana's home-court mastery of cold-shooting Dwyane Wade and the Miami Heat came down to one possession, one last shot and one big scare.

    Fast Facts

    • The Pacers knocked off the Heat at home for the 14th straight time, led by 28 points from Danny Granger and 20 points off the bench from T.J. Ford.

    • Dwyane Wade led the Heat with 21 points, but shot just 5-of-24 from the field. It was the second-worst shooting performance of his career in a game in which he took at least 20 shots.

    • The Pacers 12 assists were their fewest in a win since an April 20, 2005 win over the Bulls in which they also had just 12 dishes.

    -- ESPN research

    The 90-88 victory Wednesday night was Indiana's 17th straight home win against the Heat, but it wasn't certain until Wade's desperation 3-point shot went halfway down and rimmed out at the buzzer.

    "I thought it was [going in] for a quick second, then I saw he shot it a little to the left and that's why it rolled out," said Danny Granger, who led Indiana with 28 points. "Fortunately, he missed it."

    Wade, the NBA scoring leader at almost 30 points a game, had 21 points but was just 5-of-24 from the field, including 2-of-11 in the second half.

    "I think it was good defense collectively," Granger said. "A player like Dwyane Wade, he scores out of this world, he does it on a regular basis."

    Indiana trailed by four early in the fourth but took control with a 13-1 run midway through the quarter and held on despite going scoreless for nearly the final 4 minutes. The 17 straight wins, including three in the playoffs, go back more than seven years, and Wade has never won in Conseco Fieldhouse.

    "I don't know why we are so dominant here against them, I really don't," Granger said. "But it's a good streak."

    Granger had seven points, and T.J. Ford six during Indiana's big run, and a 3-pointer by Granger gave the Pacers their biggest lead at 90-80. Former Pacer Jermaine O'Neal had two baskets during an 8-0 run that brought Miami within two. The Heat then had two chances to tie, but neither Udonis Haslem nor Wade could convert in the closing seconds.

    "It's just one of those nights, man," Wade said. "Naw, I got a lot of good shots. I've played against the Pacers many times, so I know how to play against them. I just missed a lot of shots I normally hit. It's just one of those nights."

    Haslem finished with 18 points and 14 rebounds, and O'Neal had 13 points and three blocks but only two rebounds.

    Ford added 20 points and Jarrett Jack 13 for the Pacers. Jeff Foster, starting in place of injured Troy Murphy, had a season-high 16 rebounds.

    The bulk of the defense on Wade throughout the game was by Indiana rookie Brandon Rush.

    "I just tried to challenge him on every shot he took and tried to stay in front of him," Rush said. "I tried to contest everything he put up and make sure I got a hand up every time he left his feet."

    Wade hit only three of 13 shots in the first half but kept Miami close from the free-throw line.

    He hit all six of his first-half foul shots, including the first two during a 10-2 run that erased an early seven-point Pacers lead. A 3-pointer by James Jones and a basket by Michael Beasley put the Heat up 29-27 early in the second period. Wade pushed Miami's lead to 49-45 with two more free throws with 13 seconds left in the half, but a 3-pointer by Jack with 2 seconds to go got the Pacers within one.

    Miami took its biggest lead at 74-70 on two free throws by Mario Chalmers before a basket by Ford started Indiana's decisive run.

    "That was an outstanding defensive effort by our team the entire game," Indiana coach Jim O'Brien said. "To hold an MVP candidate to 5-of-24 shooting is terrific."

    Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said Miami still had a chance to win, even with the horrible shooting by Wade.

    "He'd probably like to have some of those shots back," Spoelstra said. "They just weren't going down tonight."

    Game notes

    The Pacers have held each of their last four opponents to under 95 points. ... Wade, who set Miami's single-season scoring record on Monday, increased it to 2,085. ... Chalmers and Rush were teammates on Kansas' NCAA championship team last year. ... The Pacers were without Murphy, who sprained a ligament in his left knee in a shootaround earlier Wednesday, and Marquis Daniels, out for the third straight game because of a sprained right wrist. ... Since losing three straight to Miami in 2001-02, the Pacers have won 20 of their past 26 against the Heat.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 88 90
    FGM-FGA 31-83 (.373) 35-79 (.443)
    3PM-3PA 3-17 (.176) 5-19 (.263)
    FTM-FTA 23-29 (.793) 15-20 (.750)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 9-44 10-50
    Assists 24 12
    Turnovers 7 12
    Steals 6 4
    Blocks 5 10
    Fast Break Points 7 10
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 15 (0/0) 22 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 4 10

    Top Performers

    Udonis Haslem Haslem
    Points: 18
    Reb: 14
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 0
    Danny Granger Granger
    Points: 28
    Reb: 4
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 3
    Blk: 2