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NBA Playoffs: Can the Heat go up 2-0 without Bosh?

May 15, 2012, 6:35 PM EDT

Chris Bosh injured Getty Images

The Miami Heat managed to win Game 1 of their series with the Indiana Pacers thanks to an absolutely incredible half from both LeBron James and Dwayne Wade, but don’t be fooled: Bosh’s injury changes the entire dynamic of the series. If James and Wade can play like they did in the 2nd half of Game 1 throughout the series, the Heat will probably win, because they’re just that good and the Pacers are somewhat lacking in star power. However, if James and Wade aren’t absolutely locked in for the majority of Game 2, here’s what Miami will need to do to hold serve at home:

— Get some floor spacing. Miami won Game 1 in spite of the fact that they went 0-6 from beyond the arc. That’s not going to work for the rest of the series. Mike Miller, Shane Battier, and Mario Chalmers‘ primary value to the Heat on offense is their ability to stretch the floor, and Erik Spoelstra should think about giving James Jones some minutes if his trio of shooters continue to have trouble finding the rim.

— Swarm defensively. This is something the Heat did extremely well in Game 1, and have done quite well all season. LeBron James, who finished 4th in Defensive Player of the Year voting this season, typically takes his defense to another level in the playoffs, and he held Danny Granger to 1-10 shooting from the field while snagging 2 steals and a block in Game 1. The Heat will need to make up for their lack of size on Roy Hibbert and David West by using their ability to cover ground defensively to make the Pacers uncomfortable on offense and keep Hibbert or West from getting 1-on-1 matchups on the block.

— Get contributions from the Haslem/Anthony/Turiaf trio. Haslem played terribly in Game 1, but fortunately for the Heat, Joel Anthony and Ronny Turiaf saved the day by providing great work on the glass, good energy on defense, and some nice dunks when the Pacers collapsed on LeBron and left a passing lane open. Anthony scored 9 points on 4-4 shooting from the field, which is 4 points shy of his career high. It’s unlikely that Anthony will play that well again offensively, and Turiaf isn’t a known commodity, so Haslem will have to step up, make his jumpers, crash the glass, and do his best to keep Roy Hibbert away from the rim on both sides of the floor.

On Indiana’s side of things, the game-plan is clear — they want to use their size and depth advantage to wear down the Heat, keep them scrambling defensively, and steal a game on the road to tie up the series. If they make their shots, hang onto the ball, and work the ball inside without forcing anything, they’re certainly capable of doing it, especially if they manage to contain James and Wade.

  1. paintman34 - May 15, 2012 at 6:41 PM

    amazing how u cant even mention Wade without mentioning LeBron

  2. thestudiokida - May 15, 2012 at 6:56 PM

    When Bosh was out before I realized that he was the Heat’s best jump shooter. While it would be nice if Bosh drove to the hoop a little more often it he still serves an important purpose on pick and pops and drive & kick jump shots.

    • paintman34 - May 15, 2012 at 6:59 PM

      people seem to forget that he’s a 7 time all star and avg 24 and 11 before he came to miami

      • thestudiokida - May 15, 2012 at 7:01 PM

        He’s good but I don’t see why he can’t still average 11 rebounds. Toronto must have seriously had no rebounders.

  3. lakerluver - May 15, 2012 at 8:19 PM

    Miami has 38 pts at the half and they’re UP by 5!! The East sucks!!!! OKC or the Spurs will crush the Eastern Conf. Champs.

  4. lakerluver - May 15, 2012 at 9:51 PM

    If the “Heatles” don’t get Posh back for the two games in Indy they just might go back to Miami down 3-1. Wouldn’t that be SWEET?!!

  5. lakerluver - May 15, 2012 at 10:02 PM

    The MVP passed the ball to Wade (AGAIN!!) in the last minute of the game when the Heatles needed a score to tie or go ahead. Then he wasn’t even in the last play of the game. And this is the MVP?!! The voters put too much stock in stats. I think CP3 was the real MVP of the regular season.

    • Kurt Helin - May 15, 2012 at 11:54 PM

      That last play was designed for Chalmers by Spoelstra.

  6. progress2011 - May 16, 2012 at 7:05 AM

    James Jones ???

    Who’s dog house is this guy in ? He shoots a better percentage than Chalmers, Battier and of course Miller.

    None of them are shut down defenders (not even Battier).

    It’s obvious the Heat need a consistent shooter, to spread the floor. Why Jones can’t touch the court, must be personal.

    If that’s the case, Spoelstra is not placing the best players on the floor, because of personal – non basketball reasons, then the Heat deserve to lose.

  7. furio2929 - May 17, 2012 at 10:27 AM

    Let Wade take over. Let him b the closer not LBJ. If the Heat want to survive they must not trust LBJ to close out the game. Let him play his min, but when the pressure is on then let Wade do what’s best. Win the game or the Heat will not make it to the next round.

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