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James and Wade lead Heat past Pacers, 115-83

Associated Press Published: May 23, 2012
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MIAMI (AP) — Dwyane Wade was bleeding after taking a smack in the head from Tyler Hansbrough, who became the target of a retaliatory shot from Udonis Haslem a few moments later.

When that was over, the Miami Heat kept hitting the Indiana Pacers where it mattered most — the scoreboard.

LeBron James scored 30 points, Wade added 28, and the Heat moved one win away from another trip to the Eastern Conference finals with a 115-83 victory over the hurting Pacers on Tuesday night, when three flagrant fouls added more intrigue to an already-physical series and Indiana watched starting forwards Danny Granger and David West leave with injuries.

"We're in the flow," James said. "We're in a good flow right now. Guys know what it takes out on the floor to help us win and guys are always in position, both offensively and defensively."

The Heat outscored Indiana 74-45 after Granger sprained his left ankle, and 86-58 after Wade took the shot from Hansbrough early in the second quarter. Miami leads the best-of-seven East semifinals 3-2, with Game 6 in Indianapolis on Thursday night.

"We learned early in this series, you don't get two wins for a blowout," Pacers coach Frank Vogel said.

James and Wade outscored Indiana's starters 58-45. James finished with 10 rebounds and eight assists, Shane Battier scored 13 points, Mario Chalmers had 11 rebounds, and Haslem scored 10 points for Miami, which never trailed, held a 22-2 edge in fast-break points and shot a franchise playoff-record 61 percent — best of any team in the playoffs this season.

Paul George scored 11 points for Indiana, with Granger and West adding 10 points apiece. Granger departed the arena in a walking boot, while West's night ended after the third quarter with what the Pacers called a left knee sprain. West said someone dove into his knee — "part of the game, I guess," West said — but on the play in question he was getting boxed out by Battier, with replays showing the Heat forward backed into his hip area.

"They played at their tempo," West said. "We weren't able to get enough stops."

A series marked by some rough moments had perhaps its worst with 19.4 seconds remaining when Miami reserve center Dexter Pittman went across the lane to send a forearm into the chin area of Indiana's Lance Stephenson — who made a choke sign toward James during the Pacers' Game 3 win.

Pittman was caught on camera winking after the foul. Stephenson had X-rays for a possible collarbone problem, but wrote on Twitter two hours after the game that he was fine.

"I don't know if that was retaliation. ... I'm sure the NBA will and do what they have to do," Granger said.

James said he hadn't seen a replay of Pittman's hit.

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