Heat rise to occasion, bury Pacers in Game 7

Updated: June 3, 2013


The Miami Heat were tested throughout their
Eastern Conference final series, but with the season and their reputation both
on the line in a decisive Game 7, they rose to the occasion.

LeBron James scored a game-high 32 points and Dwyane Wade easily had his best
game of the postseason as the defending champion Heat routed the Indiana
Pacers, 99-76, to earn their third straight trip to the NBA Finals.

The top-seeded Heat had their backs against the wall after the team dropped
Game 6 and saw the supporting cast struggle mightily, especially two-thirds of
the “Big Three” as Wade and Chris Bosh combined for 15 points.

However, the duo came to play on Monday. Wade poured in a personal series-best
21 points and grabbed nine boards, and while Bosh struggled to shoot 3-for-13,
he was a force in the paint in grabbing eight rebounds, blocking three shots
and recording two steals.

James attacked the rim all night and finished 15-for-16 from the free throw
line, and as a team Miami converted 33 of its 38 attempts from the charity

Indiana never got into rhythm offensively, was constantly forced into
turnovers and received very little out of its two top scorers.

Paul George fouled out early in the fourth quarter and was just 2-for-9 with
seven points for the game. Roy Hibbert scored 14 of his 18 points in the
second half, but by then the contest was far out of reach.

In order for Miami to capture its second straight title, it will have to get
through the San Antonio Spurs. The series begins Thursday down in South Beach.