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Pacers Vs. Heat, Game 1 Links: Miami Wins Game, Loses Bosh While Indiana Just Loses

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The Indiana Pacers let a good opportunity to win Game 1 against the Miami Heat slip away much like they did in Game 1 against Orlando when they were outscored 9-0 down the stretch and couldn't make a play to hold on for the win.

This was different, though. The Heat outscored the Pacers 9-1 in the final four and a half minutes but Miami's pressure forced Indiana into a situation where they would need to execute at a high level just to get decent looks and instead they let that pressure break them down, forcing bad passes and worse possessions. Unlike against the Magic, when the Pacers couldn't get a shot to fall, against Miami in Game 1 they couldn't get a good look that wasn't under duress.

That pressure makes it hard to move the ball and stay in motion and the Pacers basically stopped trying to make their offense work. Combine that with five missed free throws in the fourth quarter and little to nothing from Danny Granger and Paul George and it is hard to believe this was a two possession game with two minutes to play.

Larry Bird mentioned in an interview last week about how the level of play rises with each game in the playoffs and the Pacers fully experienced that intensity in the second half. Miami was able to make the Pacers uncomfortable, so now we'll see if Indiana has the toughness and discipline to adjust and continue to compete with the Heat. Both teams are capable of playing better than they showed in Game 1, but actually doing it on the court remains a challenge for the Pacers.

Check out the links after the jump.