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Indiana Pacers vs. Miami Heat Game 5 Preview

Written by Gaby Varji   
Thursday, 30 May 2013 07:33

Eastern Conference Finals, Game 5:  Indiana Pacers vs. Miami HeatThe Indiana Pacers have not backed down from the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals. Now comes the hard part: winning a second game in Miami to take control.

Eastern Conference Finals, Game 5:

Indiana Pacers @ Miami Heat – Thursday, May 30

At the top sportsbooks, you're probably going to see some competing views on this contest. Some will say that Indiana can take Miami, while others will say that the Heat will get healthy at home. It’s a legitimately open question.

If you scour various 5dimes reviews during an NBA season, you will know that Indiana has now beaten Miami four times – twice in the regular season and twice in this series. The online sports betting considerations in play here are evident, and they point to a contentious Game 5. Indiana has the composition of players that can thwart and frustrate Miami.

The Pacers have a superb big man, Roy Hibbert, whose size and length give Miami problems on the offensive glass while also forcing the Heat’s best player, LeBron James, to alter his shot when taking the ball to the basket.

 

A pay per head bookie who takes business on this contest will realize that whereas James used a post-up game to great effect in Game 3 on Sunday, when Miami cruised to victory by an 18-point margin, James did not post up very much in Game 4 on Tuesday. Indiana was able to regain control of the flow of play and, accordingly, knot the series at two games apiece. James should be able to post up more in this game and use his physical strength against a smaller and thinner defender, Pacer wing Paul George. This should give Miami a tactical advantage and open up more opportunities for the Heat’s role players, specifically Dwyane Wade and reserve guard Ray Allen.

The advantage Indiana must continue to pursue is connected to the X-factor for the Heat. Miami is at its best not necessarily when LeBron is at his best, because LeBron is at his best almost all the time. LeBron usually needs help in order to win a series, and the man who must help him more than anyone else on the Heat’s roster is forward Chris Bosh. You will recall that in the 2012 NBA Playoffs, Bosh got injured in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference semifinals against the Pacers. Miami struggled without Bosh in Games 2 and 3, but in Game 4, Wade came up huge with an emphatic performance.

Wade, though, is not as healthy as he was in Game 4 of the Pacers series last year. He is simply not as dynamic a scorer. Miami needs Bosh to deliver the goods in this series, not just as a jump shooter, but as a rebounder. He can’t be expected to out-rebound Hibbert and teammate David West, but he has to be competitive on the glass and get his fair share of defensive rebounds. West, though, has been enjoying a better series than Bosh by a considerable margin. If West dominates Bosh in Game 5, Indiana will have a very good chance of winning on the road in Miami.

At the end of the day, though, Miami is so good when coming off a loss. The Heat have gone multiple months without losing two games in a row. In fact, they haven’t lost two games in a row since the month of January. Those are tall odds for the Pacers to counter, especially since this game is in Miami. Yes, Miami lost Game 5 of a 2-2 East Finals series last year against the Boston Celtics, but the Heat should be able to respond on this occasion. Take the Heat.

 
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