With a 91-99 final score, the Miami Heat have officially dropped to three games under .500. There’s a few bright spots in the loss, but definite glaring errors just as well.
Josh Richardson: 28 points on 10/16 shooting, 7/10 (!!!) from beyond the arc. What a night for the youngster. Seems like a good time to plug my Most Improved Player article again.
Forcing Turnovers: After all was said and done, the Pacers committed 19 turnovers against the Miami Heat. The Heat converted for 22 points off turnovers, which is good, but not great.
Making Oladipo a Non-Factor: Vic Oladipo only put up eight points on 3-12 from the field. The Heat shut down the best player on the Pacers, but let Tyreke Evans erupt off the bench.
Defensive Effort: Matching defensive-minded Indiana’s stats is no easy feat. The Heat matched Indiana’s 10 steals, and had five blocks to their six. Not too shabby. Whiteside and Adebayo predictably accounted for two blocks each.
Committing Turnovers: As mentioned in the preview for tonight’s game, Miami is the fourth worst team in the league when it comes to turnovers. They were sloppy once again, and coughed the ball up 16 times for 19 Indiana points.
Three-Point Shooting: The Heat and Pacers both made 14 three-pointers, but it took the Heat 36 attempts, and it only took the Pacers 27. Despite Richardson’s 7/10 (again, !!!!) night from behind the arc, Miami shot a tough 38.9% to Indiana’s 51.9%. Deep-range deadeye Wayne Ellington was off his game, shooting just 3-9 from range.
Losing the Lead: By the end of the first quarter, the Heat had a nice 27-18 lead. They were then outscored in the second quarter by 16 points, and didn’t hold the lead for a single second of the second half. That’s the ugliest stat of the night. When the Heat get ahead, it’s important to work to keep that lead, and they just got outhustled in the second-fourth quarters.
The Heat will go back to Miami to face LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday.