Lebron and Wade got some help from Shane Battier and a Danny Granger injury Tuesday night, resulting in a 115-83 blowout of the Indiana Pacers. James had 30-10-8 while Wade had 28 points of his own. Battier chipped in with 13 points going 4 for 5 from beyond the arc, adding the much needed 3rd scorer for the Heat.
Lets Get Physical
Throughout the whole series the physicality has been one of the funniest parts to watch. Tuesday night was no different, especially in the first half. Tyler Hansbrough decided to clobber Dwayne Wade and got hit with a flagrant 1. Moments later, Udonis Haslem took out his frustration on Hansbrough and pummelled Tyler’s face with a blow of his own. The latter play also resulted in a flagrant 1, really saving the Heat from any trouble whatsoever. Clearly Haslem was not going for the ball but for payback and should have been hit with the flagrant 2. Which would have resulted in his ejection from the game.
Granger Goes Down
Late in the 2nd quarter the Pacers lost their best offensive weapon, Danny Granger. Granger wasn’t only the best man on that side of the ball but also guarded James on the other. Indiana was competitive in the 1st half despite playing poorly. However as soon as it became clear early in the 3rd that Granger could no longer play, the game took a turn in the direction of South Beach.
No longer being hampered with having to defend Granger, Lebron James’ offensive game was a go. Lebron shot an efficient 12 for 19 from the floor leading to 30 points. Obviously with Granger out, and Battier doing a great job defending David West, James defensive effort was minimal. James’ greatness on defense is often overlooked. Often it takes away from his ability to be consistent on offense. Tuesday night saw Lebron being free from the burden of defense and he rewarded the Heat with buckets, boards, and assists all night long.
Dwayne Wade Is Alive
Dwayne Wade had another strong performance in game 5, scoring 28 points. At one point in the 3rd period he, along with Lebron, took the game over and put the Pacers away. Outscoring the Pacers in the 3rd, 27-17. Wade still looked a little sloppy from time to time. Looking at the box score you would never notice. He lost control of the ball while dribbling with nobody on him and looked disinterested at times on defense. With that being said, he was still closer to great than good.
Battier For 3!
Shane Battier, along with a few other Heat players, have taken much heat for their inability to score. Game 5 Battier silenced some of these people by nailing two 3 pointers to start the game, finishing the game 4 for 5 from beyond the arc and scoring 13 points. Shane’s ability to score is a great asset to the Heat. With Chris Bosh out indefinitely, it’s important somebody else takes on the load left by his absense. Battier doesn’t need to score 20 a game, but the 13 Tuesday would suffice.
To go along with the offense, Battier gave David West fits with his defense. West struggled to get open and forced up some shots while being guarded by Battier. West went 5 for 13 from the floor and only had 4 rebounds. While Battier is a great defender I am shocked West couldn’t capitalize on the boards with the smaller Battier matched up with him.
Udonis Gets A Pass
Udonis Haslem had a nice game for himself. Scoring 10 points and grabbing 6 boards in 17 minutes is a good night. What makes it even a better night, is getting away with a mugging. The Haslem foul on Hansbrough was not the hardest foul in the history of basketball. What it was however, an obvious flagrant 2. Never going for the ball, Haslem’s arms collided with Tyler’s face in a clear attempt to show toughness and get revenge. All went well for the Heat, as Udonis did not get ejected from the game. The NBA will review it and likely upgrade it to a flagrant 2. Which means Haslem will be a little lighter in the pocket book. Unfortunately for Pacers fans, that means nothing.
Game 6 will be Thursday night on ESPN at 8pm. See if the Pacers can bounce back and come to Sir Charles for the recap.
Joseph Nardone is a Writer/Blogger for Sir Charles In Charge. You can follow him on the twitter machine@JosephNardone