The Miami Heat put forth their most dominating and convincing effort of their Eastern Conference Semifinals series against the Indiana Pacers in a crucial Game 5 win. The Heat poured it on in the second half and cruised to a 115-83 win. The Heat got an ran the Pacers off the floor, getting a slew of easy transition buckets en route to setting a new franchise record for shooting percentage in a playoff game at 61.4 percent. The Heat were just one point shy of a franchise playoff high with 115 points. Indiana, on the other hand, had a woeful night on offense and never challenged in the second half.
It was once again the duo of LeBron James and Dwyane Wade that blew the Pacers off the floor, carrying over their incredible second half performance from Game 4. James scored 30 points, grabbed 10 boards, and dished 8 assists in yet another MVP-caliber performance. Wade was bloodied early by a Tyler Hansbrough flagrant foul, but he was undeterred and went on to a 28 point performance with some dazzling highlights. In a sequence that summed up the Heat's second half fastbreak dominance, James and Wade hooked up on two fastbreak dunks set up by two incredible passes by each. Animated gifs of the two plays below:
Shane Battier provided a huge boost as the key third guy for Miami, draining four three-pointers to force Indiana to guard at the three-point line.
The series now moves to Indiana for Game 6, and there will be plenty to talk about as the status for four players is up in the air. Most crucial is the injury status of Indiana's David West and Danny Granger, who both injured their ankles. Granger went out early in the third quarter and did not return. X-rays were negative but the injury appeared significant. West injured his ankle in paint on a box-out, and it was reported that he was available to return but he spent the remainder of the 4th quarter on the bench.
For Miami, the status of Udonis Haslem and Dexter Pittman will be up in the air for two fouls that will surely be reviewed by the league. Haslem hammered Tyler Hansbrough in he second quarter in a clear retaliatory move. The refs called it a flagrant one foul, but analyst Steve Kerr was adamant that he would be suspended for Game 6. Dexter Pittman, during mop-up time, elbowed Lance Stephenson as the Pacers guard came full speed into the paint to crash the glass. The TNT studio analysts seemed to think Pittman would be gone for several games for a foul they called "way over the line."
Game 6 will be Thursday night in Indianapolis.
For more news, analysis, and discussion on the Heat, visit Peninsula Is Mightier and SB Nation Tampa Bay. For the opponent's perspective throughout the series, check out Indy Cornrows and SB Nation Indiana. And for all your news and notes on the playoffs matchups, visit SB Nation's dedicated NBA hub.