The NBA playoffs are underway as every series is 2-3 games in. Four games will be up on the board throughout Saturday. One of these matchups will be between the Indiana Pacers and the Miami Heat. These two teams have played in two close games so far and I expect an exciting Game 3. This game will tip off at around 3:30 PM Eastern time on TNT.
The Pacers finished out the regular season with a record of 45-28, which had them finish in fourth place of the Eastern Conference. Indiana was able to 6-2 throughout the seeding games, which helped them move up to the fourth seed. The Pacers have fallen down 2-0 in the series and will look to bounce back with a huge win in Game 3.
Miami earned a record of 44-29 throughout this season, which put them in fifth place of the Eastern Conference. The Heat struggled in their seeding games, dropping five of their eight contests. Now Miami has gotten some momentum going as they won the first two games of this series. The Heat will look to push Indiana to the brink of elimination with a win on Saturday afternoon.
These two teams have met in some solid matchups throughout this series, but now Indiana is desperate for a win. These two teams met up twice throughout their seeding games and now in two games of this series. Both teams have seen plenty of each other, which should lead to a solid series. I expect the Pacers to come out stronger in this one to avoid falling in a hole.
The first time Indiana and Miami met in the bubble was on August 10. Victor Oladipo dropped 14 points, while Malcolm Brogdon and T.J. Warren both put up 12 points. Jimmy Butler earned 19 points and 11 rebounds. Derrick Jones finished with 18, while Tyler Herro had 17 points off the bench. The Heat were able to ride a strong all around performance to a 114-92 win.
These teams met up to finish out their seeding games on August 14. Kendrick Nunn finished with 23 points for the Heat. Solomon Hill put up another 21 off the bench, but it was not enough. Doug McDermott put up 23 points off the bench, while Alize Johnson had 11 points and 17 rebounds. Indiana bounced back with a 109-92 win.
The first game of this series was on August 18. Malcolm Brogdon and T.J. Warren both finished with 22 points for the Pacers, but it would not be enough. Jimmy Butler dropped 28 points, while Goran Dragic had 24 points. Bam Adebayo had 17 points and 10 rebounds and Tyler Herro put up 15 points off the bench. Miami took Game 1 of this series with a 113-101 win.
Game 2 of this series was back on August 20. Victor Oladipo finished with 22 points for the Pacers. Indiana’s starting lineup combined for 82 points, but it still was not enough. Duncan Robinson had 24 points, while Goran Dragic had 20 points. Jimmy Butler added 18 points, 7 rebounds and 6 assists as the Heat took a 2-0 series lead with a 109-100.
Field Goal Percentage
The Pacers had one of the best field goal percentages in the NBA in the regular season. Indiana made around 47.6 percent of their shots throughout the regular season. The Pacers made 36.3 percent of their shots from deep, which was solid. Indiana also made 52.9 percent of their shots inside the arc. The Pacers have made 48.4 percent of their shots from the field since the playoffs began, which is sixth best in the league.
Miami was top ten in field goal percentage throughout the regular season. The Heat made 46.8 percent of their shots from the field in the regular season. Miami has been cooking in the playoffs though, making 48.4 percent of their shots, which is second best. The Heat have also made 44.3 percent of their three point shots in the postseason.
The Heat have been the better team shooting the postseason. Indiana has shot well since the playoffs started, but their defense has struggled heavily. The Pacers need to find a way to slow down Miami’s lineup. The Heat have had a nice variety of scoring and will look to ride that in this matchup as well.
Malcolm Brogdon has done well for the Pacers since the playoffs started. He is averaging 19.5 points and 9.5 assists. T.J. Warren has averaged 18 points, while Myles Turner and Victor Oladipo are averaging 13 points per game in this series. Aaron Holiday has averaged 10.5 points per game since the playoffs started as well.
Jimmy Butler and Goran Dragic have helped lead the Heat in the first two games of this series. Butler has averaged 23 points, 5 rebounds and 5 assists in this series. Dragic is averaging 22 points per game. Tyler Herro is averaging 15 points per game off the bench. Duncan Robinson has averaged 15 points per game in the series, while Bam Adebayo is averaging 12 points and 7.5 rebounds.
These two teams have seen a good production throughout their lineup, but Miami has done a bit better. The Pacers need to find a way to slow down Butler and Dragic. Robinson and Herro have also taken over at times, which makes the Heat dangerous. If Indian can make some adjustments though, they could take Game 3. Look for Oladipo to control more of the floor in this one.
Miami has jumped out to an impressive 2-0 series lead, but I believe that the Pacers have a good chance to close the gap in this deficit. Indiana has been playing well, but just being outplayed. The Pacers and the Heat were neck and neck in the standings, and I expect this series to get tighter. Indiana needs to control the pace early to take Game 3.
BetOnline has the Heat listed as a -215 against the money line in this one. This implies that the Heat will win this game around 68.3 percent of the time. I believe that this line is way too big. Indiana was the fourth seed and played well in their seeding games. If the Pacers can calm down and play their game, they should be able to take Game 3.