The defending champion Miami Heat steamrolled the Indiana Pacers by the score of 99-76 last night, adding another notch to their growing legacy. This moves them one step closer to their season goal of back-to-back titles.
The Heat came out with laser-like focus from the jump, never relenting. LeBron James led all scorers with 32 points and played with a sense of urgency that made it clear he was going to will his team to a win. The King also chipped in eight rebounds, four assists, two steals, and a block. The so-called “crown” on his performance was going 15-for-16 from the free throw line, just missing what would have been a personal best 16-for-16.
Dwayne Wade, who has been struggling with a knee issue and his jump shot, came out looking like the Wade of old—driving to the hoop with reckless abandon. D-Wade ground out a tough 21-point and nine-rebound game, proving once again he tends to deliver when it counts the most.
The Heat, in general, had a lackluster shooting night, with Chris Bosh being the biggest culprit, going an awful 3-for-13 from the floor. Despite the shooting woes, Bosh did manage to score nine points, grab eight boards, and collect three blocks, putting a slightly positive spin on what has easily been his worst postseason series performance to date. Ray Allen, who uncharacteristically has had his own shooting slump of late, warmed up a bit going 3-for-5 from deep, finishing the evening with 10 points off the bench.
Pacers All-Star Paul George struggled all game to find any sort of rhythm, ending his night by fouling out early on in the fourth quarter tallying just seven points. David West and Roy Hibbert did their best to keep the Pacers in the game, combining for 32 points and 14 rebounds, respectively, but it proved futile as the the Heat let their championship-caliber performance shine in Game 7. This will be the Miami Heat‘s third straight trip to the NBA Finals and they will face the Tim Duncan-led San Antonio Spurs.
The NBA Finals will kick off Thursday and the main question will be if there will be another ring for the King and company or will San Antonio’s O.G. “Big Three” add to their Hall of Fame resumes?