Reporting Tim Kephart
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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Many in the media and on sports talk radio are blaming NBA MVP LeBron James for the Heat’s loss in Game 2 Tuesday night. The reality is that it was a team loss as no one else showed up for the Heat.
In some ways, the Heat should take some solace from the fact that the Big Two of LeBron and Dwyane Wade almost beat the Pacers two on five. But the rest of the Heat team were just flat out awful in Game 2.
Outside of LeBron and Wade, no one on the Heat’s roster scored more than five points. Not only that, the team’s shooting was abysmal for the game. Leaving out LeBron and Wade, the rest of the team shot a combined 9 of 34 or 26 percent from the field.
But that’s not the ugliest stat from Game 2’s loss and the Pacers series overall. Through two games, the Heat are 1-22 from behind the three-point line, meaning they are shooting 5% from long range.
Some criticized Miami Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra’s decision at the end of the game to give the ball to Mario Chalmers to hit a much-needed three point shot to send the game into overtime. Statistically speaking, Chalmers is the best three-point shooter on the court for the Heat this year.
Much of what was missing during Game 2 was any sense of offensive continuity. For most of the game, it was simply LeBron and Wade coming off a pick and trying to get a shot.
Several times in the second-half, the Heat were getting to the basket, but shots were blocked because the Pacers didn’t have to come out from the lane to respect the Heat shooters. If the Heat shooters can’t give more spacing by hitting open shots and Bosh can’t return, the Heat could be done in the second round.
Still, the Heat played as poorly as they could Tuesday night and the Pacers barely beat them by three points. If just one Heat player gets double figures to help out the Big Three, the Heat are up 2-0 in the series.
The games now shift to Indiana, where Miami has played well this season. But, a wild atmosphere is awaiting the Heat. If they continue to shoot this poorly from both the floor and the free throw line, they will quickly lose home court advantage in this series.
Tipoff for Game 3 is set for 7:00 p.m. on Thursday.