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Heat Rout Pacers in Game 7, Reach Finals
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On June 3, 2013 @ 11:57 pm In Main Page,Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Jeff Zillgitt, USA TODAY Sports
MIAMI — An hour before tip-off of Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals between the Indiana Pacers and Miami Heat, LeBron James summed up the gravity of the moment.
“I grew up watching Game 7s. This is the ultimate,” he said. “For a basketball player to be able to be in a Game 7 and to punch your ticket to the NBA Finals, it don’t get no better than this. This is something that we all dream of and if you didn’t dream of it, you shouldn’t be here tonight honestly.”
The defending champions — Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh included, for the doubters — were ready for the occasion and gave the young Pacers a pointed lesson in what is required to reach the Finals.
The Heat destroyed the Pacers 99-76 in Game 7 of the conference finals on Monday in an anticlimactic conclusion to what had been a captivating and competitive series.
The Heat advance to the Finals for the third consecutive season, and against the San Antonio Spurs, the Heat will try to win their second title in a row. Game 1 is Thursday in Miami (9 p.m. ET, ABC).
Miami knew what it would get from James, who finished with what is standard fare for him: 32 points, eight rebounds and four assists. In four previous Game 7s, James averaged 33.8 points and 8.3 rebounds.
But what about Wade and Bosh who struggled offensively against the defensive-minded Pacers? They came to play. Wade had his best game of the series with 21 points and nine rebounds — the first time he reached 20 points since the first round. Yeah, there’s still a little fuel left in the old man’s tank.
“You’ve got to give what you got,” Wade said on TNT after the win. “The first six games didn’t matter. All that mattered was Game 7.”
Bosh didn’t have a great scoring game (nine points) but had eight rebounds, his series high against a team that rendered him ineffective for a majority of the series.
“Dwyane has proven himself for 10 years in the biggest moment,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said … [For more on Miami Heat rout Indiana Pacers in Game 7, reach Finals, click here.]
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