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Indiana at Miami

Late 3-pointers cap Heat's 4th-quarter rally vs. Pacers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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MIAMI -- For so much of the night, just about everything was going wrong for the Miami Heat. They were missing every 3-pointer, arguing plenty of calls, even screaming at one another.

Then one quick burst changed everything.

Dwyane Wade scored 32 points, LeBron James added 24 on a sore left ankle, and Chris Bosh and Ray Allen connected on huge 3-pointers within a 31-second span down the stretch. It all added up to the Heat erasing a 15-point deficit in the final 18 minutes to beat the rival Indiana Pacers 97-94 on Wednesday.

"It shows we're a team that's been there before," Wade said. "No matter what the score is we always feel we have an opportunity to win the game."

So even when Indiana led 68-53 midway through third quarter, hope remained.

And even when James and Mario Chalmers were getting in a heated exchange during one particularly bleak stretch -- James said afterward that he was wrong, and Chalmers said the matter was forgotten -- the Heat didn't fall apart.

"It was a good win," James said. "Good, good, quality win against a very good team on our home floor. We had to overcome a lot."

Paul George scored 25 points for Indiana but missed a 3-pointer that would have tied it with 4 seconds left, and insisted afterward that he was fouled by James on the play.

"I went into my shot, got pushed in the back, I thought it was a foul, nothing was called, and we lost the game," George said. "Aside of that we still should have taken care of business."

David West had 23 points and Lance Stephenson added 13 for the Pacers, who have dropped two straight and saw their lead over Miami in the Eastern Conference trimmed to one game. Both teams have won against the other on their home floor this season, and Miami topped Indiana at home in Game 7 of the East finals a year ago.

"It's December," Pacers coach Frank Vogel said. "I think you have two great teams going at it. It's going to be a fun series all season, the regular-season matchups, and hopefully we will both be able to reach a point in the playoffs where we can meet again."

Miami got the 15-point deficit down to five by the end of the third quarter, and was still down 92-85 when West scored with 3:21 remaining.

Then, for the first time all night, the Heat put together a real run.

The Heat scored the next 10 points -- Bosh's 3-pointer, his first in 15 attempts, tied it at 92. And after George missed in the lane at the other end, James brought the ball the other way and found Allen for a 3-pointer that put the Heat ahead for the first time since the score was 14-13.

They didn't trail again.

"I was encouraged by our ability to stay focused and show some resolve in the second half," Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. "It wasn't necessarily pretty, but you have to make enough plays ... and a lot of times against this opponent it has to be like that, where it's not smooth and you have to make enough plays to just give yourself a chance in the end."

The Pacers had a chance at the lead late, but it went awry when George Hill turned the ball over on a pass with 14 seconds left. Allen made two free throws with 10.3 seconds remaining to put Miami up by three, and that capped the scoring.

Pacers center Roy Hibbert got his fourth foul early in the third, and Vogel opted to leave him in the game. The gamble appeared to backfire 46 seconds later when Hibbert picked up his fifth with 8:34 remaining in the quarter.

Hibbert went to the bench -- but the Pacers didn't miss a beat.

George made three free throws after getting hit beyond the arc by Chalmers to put Indiana up 66-51 midway through the third, and the Pacers' lead was still 14 with 4:17 left in the period.

"They stole the game from us," West said.

Even though the teams won't see each other again until March, and with the playoffs still 50-something games away, there was clearly a little more meaning to this one.

James was questionable because of a bad ankle, the one he twisted in Monday's win over Utah. Vogel was questionable because of bad spaghetti -- at least, he thinks that's what caused a quick bout with illness that set in after he dined Tuesday night.

By game time, both pronounced themselves ready.

Notes

Pacers F Danny Granger, who has played in just five games since the start of last season because of injuries, will practice Thursday and is set to return to the lineup. ... Neither team has topped 100 points in the last six meetings, including playoff games.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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LeBron James plays through a bad ankle to the tune of 24 points and the Heat even the season series vs. the Pacers.  (USATSI)
LeBron James plays through a bad ankle to the tune of 24 points and the Heat even the season series vs. the Pacers. (USATSI)
Scoreboard
Indiana (20-5)2626241894
Miami (19-6) «2219302697
IND:P. George 25 Pts
IND:L. Stephenson 9 Reb
IND:P. George 6 Ast
MIA:D. Wade 32 Pts
MIA:L. James 9 Reb
MIA:L. James 7 Ast
Players of the Game
IndianaMiami

Paul George

Dwyane Wade
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
25863231

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Indiana
P. George, SF438-167-886425
L. Stephenson, SG415-92-292413
D. West, PF368-157-832223
G. Hill, PG312-82-23117
R. Hibbert, C232-32-22156
I. Mahinmi, C231-53-44135
C. Watson, PG171-60-02002
L. Scola, PF143-82-22028
R. Butler, SG122-30-03005
D. Granger, SFDid Not Play
D. Sloan, PGDid Not Play
O. Johnson, SGDid Not Play
C. Copeland, SFDid Not Play
S. Hill, SFDid Not Play
Totals 32-7325-2836132194
 43.8%89.3% 
Miami
D. Wade, SG3715-252-331132
L. James, SF368-147-797324
C. Bosh, PF315-104-682315
M. Chalmers, PG191-52-21544
S. Battier, SF150-10-00020
C. Andersen, PF284-50-04048
R. Allen, SG272-62-27307
N. Cole, PG251-60-01203
R. Lewis, PF151-50-02113
U. Haslem, PF70-01-22021
R. Mason Jr., SGDid Not Play
J. Jones, SFDid Not Play
G. Oden, CDid Not Play
J. Anthony, CDid Not Play
M. Beasley, PFDid Not Play
Totals 37-7718-2237212097
 48.1%81.8% 
Other Games
Utah 86 Final
Orl 82
Char 104 Final
Tor 102
Sac 107 Final
Atl 124
Det 107 Final
Bos 106
Wash 113 Final
Brook 107
NY 107 Final
Mil 101
Port 109 Final
Min 120
Mem 91 Final
Dal 105
SA 108 Final
Pho 101
Chi 94 Final
Hou 109
NO 95 Final
LAC 108