The Miami Heat’s second round NBA playoff series with the Indiana Pacers has been much more difficult than pretty much everybody outside of the Hoosier State expected. But, LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Co. did rally in Indiana Sunday to tie the series at two games apiece, and in the process re-established home-court advantage and the upper hand mentally.
Heat swingman Mike Miller joined Dan Sileo on WQAM in Miami to talk about the series with Indiana. He opened up on if the heavily-favored Heat might have taken the Pacers too lightly early in the series and how much the abdominal injury to Chris Bosh has affected the team, as well as the team’s Game 3 loss not getting to them. Miller wouldn’t say he was disappointed with the team’s performance this postseason, but he didn’t sound excited about it either.
On if the Heat took the Pacers lightly:
“No, I don’t think so. … Bottom line is they’re a really good basketball team, very good basketball team. They’re big, they’re athletic, they’re young, they’re long. (They) can shoot it. Defensively they’re really good. And you’re fighting out it’s a Eastern Conference bloodfest right now and if you look across the board, they’re pretty even everywhere. And it definitely hurts missing Chris Bosh as well. There’s things we’ve had to overcome, there’s no excuses. It’s a good basketball team, it’s gonna be a dogfight in a best-of-three series now.”
On their Game 3 blowout loss only being one game in a seven-game series:
“It is and that’s what makes the playoffs so fun. If you go back to Saturday, going into that game, playoffs are fickle — you going into that game, you lose on Sunday and the series looks grim. But you go into that game and win on Sunday and now you’ve done your job and the series is tied (and) you got home court. So that’s what makes the playoffs fun. And we’ve been a target since we put this team together and how things have gone, so we’re kind of accustomed to it as a team anyway. So that stuff is stuff that we can use to fuel, but at the same time we know when to listen to it and when not to.”
On if they’re disappointed or OK with their play this postseason:
“Obviously, we’re sitting where we want to be. The New York series was a fun series, the Indiana there’s been some ups and downs, there’s no question about it. We’re definitely doing what we need to do as far as handling the business day-to-day right now. We’d obviously like to make it easier for ourselves in the playoffs but it is what it is right now. It’s 2-2 and we’ll have a dogfight ahead of us.”
More on not having Chris Bosh:
“It definitely hurts losing Chris. We lose a low-post scorer, someone that spread the floor, also a good rebounder, and we lose size. So whenever a third of your offense goes out this late in the season you’re kind of scrambling to find a replacement. Fortunately for us, Shane (Battier) and Udonis Haslem are doing a great job and our bigs are doing a good job as well.”