Will: Panic vs. the Pacers?
It's normal for fans and the media to overreact following a loss, especially one as disappointing as the Heat's Game 2 loss to Indiana. I won't allow myself to get caught up in that, and you shouldn't either.
Don't get me wrong, it's easy to panic. Miami shot 1-16 from three-point land, missed too many free throws and couldn't hit a big shot down the stretch. Most of that falls on LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, and that shouldn't come as a surprise. They are the two stars of this team and carried Miami to a win in game one. Everyone expected the same in game two, me included.
They couldn't recreate the magic in game two, despite scoring 26 of the team's final 29 points. But, let's take a step back and look at the real problem. Without Chris Bosh, Miami had no 3rd option. Literally, no one stepped up to produce.
I mentioned after the opening win that James and Wade could carry Miami past Indiana, but they need SOME help. It doesn't take much. Remember, in the series opener, Joel Anthony chipped in with 9 points and 7 rebounds. That was enough to help. Mike Miller and Shane Battier also hit a couple of clutch shots.
What happened in game two? Well, the Heat's 3rd leading scorer had a grand total of 5 points! Do you know how many times in franchise history had Miami not had three players score more than 5 points in a game? Zero. That's right, according to the Associated Press, that had NEVER happened before. It makes it pretty easy to realize what needs to happen next.
Miami needs some big shots elsewhere throughout the course of the game. I think that will happen. I refuse to think the Heat will continue to shoot 1-22 from three-point land in this series. Plus, Wade and LeBron will carry this team. They just need a little help.
Which leads me back to my original question. Are the Heat in trouble? My answer is no. The Heat are now in a playoff series. They have the playoff experience to regroup and rebound in game three. As the younger generation likes to say, things just got real. Very real for Miami.
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