Playing on the road, the Indiana Pacers started off well against the Miami Heat in the last game of the Eastern Conference Finals. No thanks to the hot hands of Ray Allen, the visitors couldn’t hold on to the lead and the defending champions ran away with the easy 99-87 victory.
The veteran shooter finished with 16 points-- hitting four 3-pointers in the fourth quarter-- helping LeBron James (26 points, 7 assists and 4 steals) and Dwyane Wade (23 points and 3 steals) in towing Miami to a 2-1 series lead in the best-of-seven affair.
Betting Lines: Indiana Pacers (+6.5) vs. Miami Heat (Over/Under: 183.5) Game time: 10:30 am (Tuesday, May 27)
Betting Against the Spread (ATS)
Indiana Pacers Trends - The Pacers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games on the road - The Pacers are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 games after an ATS loss - The Pacers are 6-2 ATS in their last 8 games after a loss
Miami Heat Trends - The Heat are 7-3 ATS in their last 10 games - The Heat are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. the Pacers - The Heat are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games vs. the Pacers in Miami
The Pacers defense held the Heat to just 36 points in the first half of Game 3 but gave up 33 points in the third quarter and 28 in the fourth quarter turning what was a close match to a blowout affair. For Indiana to have a chance in the next game their defense should be consistent all-game long especially against other key contributors not named James or Wade.
Offensively, Indiana actually shot 47.7 per cent (31-of-65 FG) in Game 3 better than they did in Game 2 (40%) but couldn’t stop Allen and the Heat, which shot 54.4 per cent (37-of-68 FG) for the game.
Prediction: Pacers start off hot once again but this time hold off a Heat rally in the second half. Indiana will make adjustments in this one-- or revert to what worked against Miami in the past: pack the paint and take advantage with Roy Hibbert and David West. Indiana Pacers 96, Miami Heat 91