The Pacers had the Heat on the ropes early in Game 3 and let it slip through their fingers. The Heat started dictating the pace of the game and went rebound-for-rebound with Indiana, which is inexcusable with Roy Hibbert in the paint. The Pacers do not have the shooters to outgun Miami right now and are resorting to trash talk to throw LeBron James off his game.
Indiana has to come up with a better strategy to turn this series around. The Pacers have had success on the road in the playoffs, but Miami is a place where the Pacers typically do not perform well. On Saturday night, you could see the wind fall out of Indiana’s sails with each emphatic dunk that sent the Miami crowd into a frenzy. Indiana has a leadership problem, and when the going gets tough, fingers start pointing.
Winning Game 4 in Miami is a must, because Indiana is now 2-6 in their last eight playoff games at Miami, dating back to the 2012 Eastern Conference semifinals. The solution is simple: Relax, win the rebounding battle and stop committing demoralizing turnovers. Those emphatic dunks that Miami thrives on are usually the product of an ill-advised pass or a steal.
The Pacers have 28 turnovers in their two losses and cannot continue to give the defending champions opportunities to take the momentum. With Ray Allen firing on all cylinders from behind the arc and James attacking the rim as he normally does, every possession matters. If the Pacers lose tonight, they will definitely be going fishing, but not in the good way.