“MVP MVP MVP “ those were the chants around the American Airlines Arena prior to the Miami Heat’s second round matchup between the Indiana Pacers. David Stern introduced LeBron as the 2011-2012 NBA Most Valuable Player.
The award was his third in the last four years and the first for a Miami Heat player. The pregame festivities hyped the Miami crowd up and put a little tear in my eyes. For some reason I get very emotional during sports or it could have been the alcohol. It was mother’s day and I was hyped. I wanted redemption for the 2003 playoffs where Indy knocked us out up the playoffs in Wade’s rookie year.
Indy did everything right in the first quarter while Miami struggled atrociously. Miami went 1-6 to open the quarter, not what I wanted to see especially in the first game in round 2 of the playoffs. The Heat took 18 shots in the first only cashing in on 6 of them. Indy made the most of the Heat’s poor shooting, Roy Hibbert mad a skyhook over Bosh that put the Pacers up by 7 halfway through the first 19-12. Miami’s awful shooting didn’t prohibit them from getting points , The Heat were relentless attacking the rim . Of the six shots made for Miami 4 of them came inside the paint. The Heat were able to over come a bad shooting quarter and close within three of the Pacers 23-20. LeBron had six points in the first.
The big story of the second was a serious injury to Chris Bosh with 1:06 remaining in the period Bosh drew a foul on Hibbert after throwing down a crowd erupting jam. Bosh laid in agony for a few seconds and bounced up to defend on the other end, but couldn’t finish the play. The Heat announced he would not return due to a lower abdominal strain. With Bosh out for the game and the Miami down by 9 48-39, the Heat would need an MVP performance from both all-stars Wade and LeBron. Indy took advantage of the Bosh injury and took a six point lead going into half time 48-42. David West gave Miami tons of problems in the first half and scored the final six points of the half for the Pacers.
It was mother’s day and with my mom out of town I took the best Heat fan I know to the game, My Grandmother. At half time I parked my grandmother at her seat and told her not to move. The pressure of this game was getting to me, I needed to get some vodka in me to calm my nerves, when I returned Gloria was gone.
I finally found her, in line at the ice cream stand with a big cup of vanilla ice cream. Jesus Gloria, I thought a Pacers fan kidnapped her. I don’t how she did it but she did, her 79-year-old cravings for ice cream willed her to the ice cream stand. I love you Gloria, you’re the best happy mothers day.
With Bosh out the Heat needed back-ups Rony Turiaf and Joel Anthony to have big games . The two of them combined for 13 points and 10 rebounds, for me that’s perfect. Bosh finished the game with 13 and 5 so if my math is correct that equals 26 points and 15 rebounds, I will take that all day long. LeBron and Wade put Miami on their backs in the second half. In the third quarter the dynamic duo netted 10 points each. They had such great chemistry between them, throwing half court lobs to one another for thunderous slams. Miami was able to out score the Pacers in the third 28-22 and tie the game at 70.
LeBron looked like a tiger just let out of his cage and he was feeding on the Pacers with no regard for human life. LeBron was aggressive and his assertiveness was present in the fourth. James showed why he is the MVP, he scored 16 of his 32 points in the final quarter to go along with 15 rebounds. Wade was aggressive when he attacked the basket and was able to go off for 29 points himself. Wade and James scored 20 straight Miami points in the fourth, a string ended by a free throw from “The Warden”. The Pacers never stood a chance with the two of them playing like they did. Heat had the 45-38 rebounding edge, and allowed Indiana to make only 11 of 37 shots after halftime. Miami was able to take game one of the second round 95-86.
Miami will have a tough time against the big’s of the Pacers with Bosh out, but Joel and Turiaf should be able to hold their own. Miami showed perseverance in the loss of their teammate, which should scare Indy. If LeBron and Wade go off like they did in game one Indy has a battle on their hands.
Game 2 is Tuesday night at 7:00 from the American Airlines Arena
~show no mercy~