This Friday, in an inconsequential game, the Pacers defeated the Heat 109-92 and ultimately took fourth place in the East, leaving everything ready for both teams to start the first round of NBA playoffs next Tuesday, August 18. .
Kendirck Nunn could finally play and was the best of the Heat with 23 points, followed by Solomon Hill had 21 and Tyler Herro 16. Nunn had missed the previous three games and there is a question as to whether he should be the starting point guard.
The worst news was that Miami forward Derrick Jones Jr. had to leave the game on a stretcher and wearing a neck brace after suffering a fortuitous encounter with Indiana center Goga Bitsadze in the third quarter, precisely in the game that everyone was looking to stay healthy. .
“Let’s wait and see. We don’t even know anything at this point. They’re doing a scan, ”Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said at the end of the game. “He hit himself on the shoulder, in the neck area. It’s moving better, so let’s wait before going into panic mode. “
Bam Adebayo, Jimmy Butler, Goran Dragic, Jae Crowder and Andre Iguodala did not play for the Heat.
Yes, Udonis Haslem did, who could have played the last NBA game, always wearing the Heat jersey. You finished with seven points (including a triple) and eight rebounds in 24 minutes.
While the Pacers were left out TJ Warren, Domantas Sabonis, Victor Oladipo and Myles Turner.
For Indiana stood out Doug McDermott with 23 points, Malcolm Brogdon with 16, Alize Johnson with 11 (plus 17 rebounds), Aaron Holiday and Justin Holiday with another 11 each and JaKarr Sampson with 10.
The game was decided in the first quarter, when Indiana took advantage of Miami’s offensive collapse to win 28-13, but neither quintet pressed to win.
Although the Heat (44-29) won the private series 3-1, the Pacers (45-28) finished in fourth place when they finished with a balance, but that does not matter since in this postseason neither team has a home advantage due to be played without an audience at the Wide World of Sports complex in Orlando.
On Tuesday (4 pm) the moment of truth comes with the first round game between the Heat and Pacers, hoping that Jones Jr. is fully recovered and can play a series that is expected to be hotly contested.