You and I both know a basketball game doesn't end after 24 Minutes. Well the Miami Heat apparently have no idea. In a game of 2 different halves the Miami Heat lose to the Indiana Pacers 106-95 after being completely embarrassed in the 3rd quarter. Miami ends 2014 terribly and hopes the "New Year New Me" method applies for 2015.
The Heat started out the 1st quarter well and things looked great in the beginning. Danny Granger entered the game with 3 minutes left in the first quarter to cheers as he played his first game against a team he once called home. Chris Andersen had 8 points and 6 rebounds in 10 minutes of first quarter action as Heat led 24-20 after the 1st quarter. The team continued to be effective in the 2nd quarter on 58% shooting efficiency compared to Indiana's 38%. The Heat also out rebounded Indiana 21-14 in the first half. Emerging Center Hassan Whiteside continues to worth watching having 6 points, 4 rebounds and 2 blocks in the first half. Miami took a 51-42 lead into the locker room. Then things took a turn for the worst.
The 3rd quarter opened up with Indiana going on a 9-1 run and Mario Chalmers had his 4th turnover of the game. Eight of those nine points came from inside for Indiana. Cj Miles brought willed Indiana back into the game as Indiana led for only the second time in the game 71-70 midway through the 3rd. Miami has been disastrous in the 3rd quarter most of the season and this game was no different Indiana closed the quarter on a 17-2 run, and outscored the Heat 36-19. Indiana shot 68% in the 3rd while Miami shot 39%. The game in a nutshell was a play where Dwyane Wade missed a wide open layup and Indiana got the rebound and answered with a 3.
The 4th quarter had Miami fighting back but this was a battle fought a little too late. The Heat went on a 8-2 run in the 4th quarter and got within 6 on a Luol Deng and 1 basket. The Heat never got closer again as the George Hill and Cj Miles answered with three 3's of their own and the Pacers took a double digit lead and never looked back. The Heat were outscored 26-14 from the free throw line and 30-15 from beyond the arc. The most disappointing part of this loss was how five players scored in double digits for Miami yet they still lose. For a team lacking size Miami also had a season high 7 blocks for the game. Few players who performed well:
Hassan Whiteside and Chris Andersen- [17 points & 14 rebounds]: One starts and one comes off the bench. Whiteside continues to be the player worth watching for this team, and Bird continues to bring the energy
Luol Deng and Danny Granger: [29 points and 6 rebounds] - So this is why James Ennis isn't playing. The 2 forwards for Miami continue to be in great rhythm & Danny Granger performed well against his former team
Dwyane Wade had 20 points in the game but it was on 20 shots. 14 of those points came in the 1st half, 2 came in down the stretch and only 4 came in garbage time with the game out of reach. Even though Chris Bosh had 18 points and 8 rebounds, Miami goes only as Dwyane goes and today was disappointing.
The most positive thing for the Heat lately have been rumors of Lebron coming back. Miami will regroup and play at Houston on Saturday. See you then for the ReHeat and Happy New Years Everyone! - @MyNameIsBinoj