I am firmly of the belief that the Indiana Pacers are better team now than the team they were when they twice beat the Miami Heat earlier this season. The problem is, this current Heat team is playing out of their minds. Combine that with home court for the Heat and a thirst for revenge — the Pacers simply had no chance.
Final score, 105-91, and the Pacers never got very close after the Heat finished off with a flurry to lead by 10 at the half.
The Pacers' strategy appeared to be to contain Lebron James and let everyone else beat them. They kept Lebron to a season low 13 points, but boy, the other guys REALLY stepped up. Mario Chalmers had 26, Christ Bosh 24 and Dwyane Wade 23. As for the Pacers, apart from David West, who had 24, no one else was effective.
This was a game that put the Pacers back in their rightful place — very very far behind the Miami Heat. That said, the Pacers are probably still the second best team in the East, and that can't be a bad thing at this stage of the season. With some luck, they are still the team in the East with the best chance of causing an upset against the defending champs, even if that chance is, as of now, barely above zero.
Next up, the Timberwolves at home, followed by a date with another streaking team — the LA Lakers.