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NBA Indiana PacersMiami Heat

5 Reasons Why Miami Heat Should Fear Indiana Pacers

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No Joking Matter

LeBron James Dwyane Wade and Ray Allen of Miami Heat
Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

If everything goes according to plan, the NBA will see another epic Eastern Conference Finals between the dubbed "Beasts of the East." Except, there are some differences between this year and last, such as the fate of the "Big 3" and LeBron James or the Miami Heat's reign at the top of the league. The Heat has everything to lose while the Indiana Pacers have everything to gain. Here are five reasons why Miami should fear the gold and blue.

5.) There's an Edge to Them

Lance Stephenson and Dwyane Wade exchange words
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

5.) There's an Edge to Them

Lance Stephenson and Dwyane Wade exchange words
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

If Lance Stephenson's attitude wasn't enough to install some sort of fear in the Heat, then I don't know what will. It is obvious that Indiana no longer fears Miami, but instead wants nothing more than to beat the living snot out of them. Neither the referees nor the Heat could stop Stephenson from running his mouth, what makes the Heat think that is a good thing?

4.) Youth on Their Side

Paul George Dunks basketball
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

4.) Youth on Their Side

Paul George dunks basketball
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

Miami's age has caught up with them throughout the season as it did last year. Dwyane Wade was nearly obsolete in last year's East Finals and that could happen again if the Heat aren't careful. It is no secret that Indiana has youth on their side with an average roster age of 27 years old, compared to Miami's of 30 years old. The Pacers now have both youth and experience, even more reason to take them more seriously.

3.) As Physical as They Come

Indiana Pacers Miami Heat fight
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

3.) As Physical as They Come

Indiana Pacers Miami Heat fight
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana knows if they want to beat Miami, they have to take it right to their chest and that is what they did last week. We saw hard foul after hard foul, little scuffles and plenty of elbows. There really isn't another team, other than the Chicago Bulls, who play as physical as the Pacers. The Heat do not have the bodies to battle that way and the Pacers don't seem to care.

2.) Towering Front Court

Indiana Pacers Roy Hibbert
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

2.) Towering Front Court

Indiana Pacers Roy Hibbert
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

If Udonis Haslem is Miami's best post defender, than the Heat may experience a bit of trouble, especially if they get into a seven-game slug-fest with the Pacers. Roy Hibbert and David West have already proved to be a problem Miami does not know how to deal with. Add Luis Scola and Goliath may come crashing down to the ground.

1.) Possible Home-Court Advantage

Indiana Pacers cheerleaders dancers
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

1.) Possible Home-Court Advantage

Indiana Pacers Cheerleaders Dancers
Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

There is still one more game between these two rivals, but if Miami can't get it together soon, the road to the Finals will go through Indiana. That is something the Heat cannot afford, considering they are 0-2 on the Pacers' home court this season. There really is no place like home.