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Pacers pull away from Heat 107-96 to take 1-0 lead

Pacers protect home court, pull away from Heat 107-96 to take 1-0 lead in East finals

An Indiana Pacers fans takes photo as the Pacers and Miami Heat warm up before Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals NBA basketball playoff series, ...
Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) shoots over Miami Heat center Chris Bosh (1) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals N...
Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) drives against Miami Heat center Chris Bosh during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals NB...
Indiana Pacers guard George Hill (3) shoots over Miami Heat guard Mario Chalmers (15) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals...
Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade (3) passes around Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals...
Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) goes for a rebound in front of teammate Shane Battier (31) and Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) and David We...
Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) gestures with Roy Hibbert against the Miami Heat during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference fin...
Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) dunks as Indiana Pacers forward Luis Scola (4) looks on during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference ...
Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra calls from the sideline against the Indiana Pacers during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference fina...
Tipoff of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals NBA basketball playoff series between the Miami Heat and the Indiana Pacers, Sunday, May 18, 2014, i...
Indiana Pacers forward David West (21) tries to stop a shot by Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conf...
Indiana Pacers forward Luis Scola (4) scores a break away dunk in front of Miami Heat center Chris Bosh (1) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eas...
Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) looks to pass under the defense of Miami Heat forward Shane Battier (31) during the first half of Game 1 of th...
Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) watches Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) hit the floor as guard C.J. Watson (32) defends during the first h...
Miami Heat guard Ray Allen (34) drives around Indiana Pacers guard Rasual Butler (8) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals ...
Miami Heat guard Norris Cole, left, knocks the ball away from Indiana Pacers guard Lance Stephenson (1) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern...
Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade (3) looks to pass as Indiana Pacers guard C.J. Watson (32) defends during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Confere...
Indiana Pacers guard Lance Stephenson (1) is defended by Miami Heat guard Norris Cole during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals...
Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra gestures to the team against the Indiana Pacers during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals ...
Indiana Pacers center Ian Mahinmi (28) takes the ball down court as Miami Heat forward Chris Andersen, rear, recovers during the first half of Game 1 ...

Heat Pacers Basketball

An Indiana Pacers fans takes photo as the Pacers and Miami Heat warm up before Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals NBA basketball playoff series, ...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) shoots over Miami Heat center Chris Bosh (1) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals N...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) drives against Miami Heat center Chris Bosh during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals NB...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers guard George Hill (3) shoots over Miami Heat guard Mario Chalmers (15) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade (3) passes around Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) goes for a rebound in front of teammate Shane Battier (31) and Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert (55) and David We...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) gestures with Roy Hibbert against the Miami Heat during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference fin...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) dunks as Indiana Pacers forward Luis Scola (4) looks on during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference ...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra calls from the sideline against the Indiana Pacers during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference fina...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Tipoff of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals NBA basketball playoff series between the Miami Heat and the Indiana Pacers, Sunday, May 18, 2014, i...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers forward David West (21) tries to stop a shot by Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conf...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers forward Luis Scola (4) scores a break away dunk in front of Miami Heat center Chris Bosh (1) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eas...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) looks to pass under the defense of Miami Heat forward Shane Battier (31) during the first half of Game 1 of th...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat forward LeBron James (6) watches Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) hit the floor as guard C.J. Watson (32) defends during the first h...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat guard Ray Allen (34) drives around Indiana Pacers guard Rasual Butler (8) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals ...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat guard Norris Cole, left, knocks the ball away from Indiana Pacers guard Lance Stephenson (1) during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat guard Dwyane Wade (3) looks to pass as Indiana Pacers guard C.J. Watson (32) defends during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Confere...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers guard Lance Stephenson (1) is defended by Miami Heat guard Norris Cole during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra gestures to the team against the Indiana Pacers during the first half of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference finals ...

Heat Pacers Basketball

Indiana Pacers center Ian Mahinmi (28) takes the ball down court as Miami Heat forward Chris Andersen, rear, recovers during the first half of Game 1 ...

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- Paul George scored 24 points, David West had 19, and the Indiana Pacers protected their home court with a 107-96 victory over the Miami Heat on Sunday to take a 1-0 lead in the Eastern Conference finals.

Indiana led wire-to-wire and never even gave the Heat a chance to tie the score after starting the game with a 5-0 lead.

Game 2 is Tuesday in Indiana. The home team has won all five meetings this season.

Dwyane Wade scored 27 points and LeBron James had 25 for the two-time defending NBA champions, who lost for only the second time in 10 playoff games.

Indiana had a 30-point first quarter for the first time since Feb. 27, extended the lead to 19 in the third and Miami couldn't get closer than nine the rest of the way.

For months, people wondered what happened to the Indiana team that dominated the first half of the NBA season.

On Sunday, those Pacers suddenly reappeared.

Indiana swarmed the glass, exploited its size advantage, knocked down early 3-pointers with regularity and defended well enough to force the Heat to play catch-up the entire game. The fans that occasionally serenaded them with boos during the first two rounds of the playoffs spent most of the first half on their feet and finished the game with repeated chants of "Beat the Heat! Beat the Heat!"

All five of Indiana's starters and backup C.J. Watson reached double figures as the Pacers produced their highest point total of the postseason.

Indiana has lost Game 1 at home in its first two playoff series, but it was obvious right from the start that this game would be different.

George Hill scored the first five points to give the Pacers the lead, which they extended to 20-10. They spent the rest of the game either pulling away or fending off Miami challenges.

When the Heat trimmed the deficit to 30-24 after one and eventually to 41-37 midway through the second quarter, Lance Stephenson scored four points in a 5-0 run to make it 46-37. When James again cut the deficit to 50-45 with back-to-back baskets late in the second, the Pacers closed the half with five straight points to make it 55-45.

Then the Pacers poured it on.

Roy Hibbert and West scored eight of Indiana's first 14 points to open the second half, making it 69-52.

James and Wade again rallied the Heat, getting Miami within 81-70 late in the third and 83-74 early in the fourth. The Pacers used a 7-0 spurt to rebuild a 102-84 lead and closed it out at the free throw line.


Updated : 2021-02-26 15:56 GMT+08:00