Final

Miami wins series 4-2 (Game 4 of 6)

Miami wins series 4-2

Game 1: Sunday, May 13th
Pacers86Final
Heat95
Game 2: Tuesday, May 15th
Pacers78Final
Heat75
Game 3: Thursday, May 17th
Heat75Final
Pacers94
Game 4: Sunday, May 20th
Heat101Final
Pacers93
Game 5: Tuesday, May 22nd
Pacers83Final
Heat115
Game 6: Thursday, May 24th
Heat105Final
Pacers93

Heat 101

(46-20, 18-15 away)

Pacers 93

(42-24, 23-10 home)

    Coverage: ABC

    3:30 PM ET, May 20, 2012

    Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN

    1 2 3 4 T
    MIA 18 28 30 25101
    IND 25 29 16 2393

    Top Performers

    Mia: L. James 40 Pts, 18 Reb, 9 Ast, 2 Stl, 2 Blk

    Ind: D. Granger 20 Pts, 5 Reb, 3 Ast

    LeBron James drops 40 as Heat even series with Pacers

    Associated Press

    INDIANAPOLIS -- The coveted NBA championship, the one LeBron James needs to validate everything, was vanishing.

    With 18,000 towel-waving fans roaring like an engine over at the Indianapolis Speedway, the Indiana Pacers had knocked the Miami Heat to the floor and to the edge of elimination.

    James didn't panic. He simply picked up his teammates and carried them to a win.

    And this time, Dwyane Wade helped.

    James scored 40 points with 18 rebounds and nine assists, and Wade added 30 points -- 22 in the second half -- as Miami rallied to even their semifinal series against Indiana with a 101-93 win on Sunday over the Pacers, who had the defending Eastern Conference champions down couldn't keep them there.

    "I felt like I had to do whatever it took to win," said James, who played all but four minutes.

    With All-Star forward Chris Bosh injured and back in Florida, the James-Wade tag team saved the Heat, who will host Game 5 on Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena.

    "Me and 'Bron had it going," said Wade, who bounced back from the worst playoff game of his career -- five points on 2-of-13 shooting -- with one of his best, "We played off of each other very well. We both were aggressive at the same time. That's beautiful basketball for the Miami Heat when we play that way."

    The Heat now head home back in control of the best-of-seven series, which is down to a best-of-three with two of the games on Miami's home floor.

    "It's still going to be a dogfight," James said.

    Udonis Haslem, playing with a large bandage covering a nasty cut over his right eye that required nine stitches, added 14 points for Miami.

    For a while, the Heat's season was slipping away.

    The underrated Pacers had built a 10-point lead in the third quarter and were threatening to run away as they did in Game 3, when James and Wade took over. They scored 38 consecutive points in one stretch bridging the second and third quarters and combined to score 28 of Miami's 30 in the third when the Heat seemed to be playing with two to Indiana's five.

    "LeBron had that look," Heat forward Shane Battier said. "And when he has that look and Dwyane has that look, you want to run through a wall."

    Wade finished with nine rebounds and six assists, erasing the ugly memory of Game 3 when he also had a confrontation with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, a public dispute that turned into a bigger deal than it probably was because of a two-day break between games. The next day, Wade, who has refused to blame injuries for his recent struggles, visited his former Marquette coach Tom Crean, who is now at Indiana.

    Wade said Crean had film for him to watch.

    "I was able to be a student of the game," Wade said. "Just figuring out what I needed to do differently to help our team get this win. I just wanted to come out today and affect the game somehow. Obviously, I knew I was struggling a little bit on my offensive game. I wasn't going to let that affect my overall game."

    James dismissed the idea the Heat were desperate team.

    "That's a strong word," he said. "It's a team with a lot of veterans and a lot of fighters."

    Danny Granger scored 20 and Paul George 13 to lead the Pacers. Center Roy Hibbert, so dominant at both ends in Game 3, had just 10 points and was in foul trouble in the second half.

    Indiana coach Frank Vogel second-guessed his decision to keep Hibbert and David West on the bench for a long stretch after halftime. But it was the Pacers' inability to stop Wade and James that was the difference.

    "You get the ball out of one of those guy's hands and it gets to the other guy's," he said. "It's not like one superhero and a bunch of role guys."

    Granger's 3-pointer had given Indiana a 61-51 and the Pacers, outhustling the Heat to loose balls, appeared poised to take a commanding lead in the series.

    But that's when James and Wade put on a jaw-dropping spectacle, combining for all but two points in a 25-5 run that put Miami up 76-66.

    During one sequence, Wade lost his balance and fell and was lucky to push the ball toward James near the top of the key. As Wade scrambled to his feet, James alertly passed him the ball and he calmly knocked down a 3-pointer to give the Heat a 64-63 lead. The pair made easy shots, tough ones and did everything in their power to steer Miami away from a 3-1 hole.

    Only eight teams in league history have overcome a 3-1 deficit to win a best-of-seven series. That's what the Heat were staring at with a loss in Game 4.

    The Heat took a 76-70 lead into the fourth, and every time Indiana got close, either Wade or James responded.

    Miami also got a huge lift down the stretch from Haslem, who hasn't been a factor in the series but made four big jumpers in the final six minutes despite having his head split by an elbow by Indiana's Louis Amundson.

    "Those guys carry a large load," Haslem said of Wade and James. "But sometimes we need other guys to step up and tonight was my turn. Next time it might be somebody else."

    Granger's 3-pointer got the Pacers within 96-91 with 1:33 left, but Haslem hit another short shot and James closed the Pacers out with three free throws in the last 16 seconds.

    Following the game, James sat in front of his locker icing both knees and reading a hard copy of "Hunger Games."

    After finishing a page or two, he set the book down. There'd be time for that later.

    The Heat were heading home, feeling good about the next chapter.

    Game notes

    James, Wade and Haslem combined for 53 of Miami's 55 second-half points. ... Before the game, Miami F Juwan Howard and Pacers G Stephenson exchanged words. In Game 3, Stephenson mocked James by flashing a choke sign after James missed a foul shot and Howard confronted the Indiana reserve. Pacers assistant coach Brian Shaw stepped between the players. ... Granger was slapped with his second technical in two games after getting in Wade's face late in the second quarter. ... James was one rebound shy of his postseason high. ... The national anthem was performed on harmonica by 85-year-old Carl Erskine, who pitched for the Brooklyn Dodgers from 1948-59. Erskine is an Indiana native. ... Heat owner Micky Arison was asked for his autograph by several fans sitting near the Miami bench. "You must be desperate," he cracked.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

    SPONSORED HEADLINES

    Team Stat Comparison

     
    MIA
    IND
    Points 101 93
    FGM-FGA 38-80 (.475) 33-79 (.418)
    3PM-3PA 5-12 (.417) 7-22 (.318)
    FTM-FTA 20-28 (.714) 20-24 (.833)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 14-47 8-38
    Assists 20 17
    Turnovers 15 15
    Steals 8 7
    Blocks 9 6
    Fast Break Points 16 14
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 24 (0/0) 28 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 10 11

    Top Performers

    Miami
    Indiana
    LeBron James James
    Points: 40
    Reb: 18
    Ast: 9
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 2
    Danny Granger Granger
    Points: 20
    Reb: 5
    Ast: 3
    Stl: 0
    Blk: 0

    Research Notes

    Udonis Haslem was 4-of-5 (80.0 percent) shooting from 10 feet and out Sunday, all in the fourth quarter. Entering the game, Haslem was 4-of-16 (25.0 percent) this postseason on such shots, and had yet to attempt one in the fourth quarter.
    LeBron James (10-of-14) and Dwyane Wade (6-of-7) combined to outscore the Pacers in Game 4 inside of 5 feet of the basket. The rest of the Heat went 2-of-9 from inside 5 feet.
      [+]
    LeBron James scored or assisted on 62 of the Heat's 101 points Sunday (61.4 percent). That's the highest total of Heat points James has scored or assisted on this season.
      [+]
    LeBron James and Dwyane Wade combined to outscore and outrebound the Pacers in the second half of Miami's Game 4 win.
      [+]
    This was the highest-scoring total for LeBron James and Dwyane Wade in their playoff career as teammates. The other highest totals all came in the Conference Semifinals last year against the Celtics. Most Combined Points in Playoff Game LeBron James and Dwyane Wade James-Wade Sun. vs Pacers 70 40-30 2011 vs Celtics 67 33-34 2011 vs Celtics 63 35-28 2011 vs Celtics 63 35-28
    LeBron James and Dwyane Wade combined for 28 points in the 3rd quarter (14 each), outscoring the entire Pacers team by 12 points in the quarter.
      [+]

    ESPN Stats & Information