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Heat vs. Pacers Links: Pacers enjoy rare opportunity in Game 2 against Heat

Control of the Eastern Conference finals is up for grabs in Game 2 at BLF on Tuesday. The Pacers expect a more physical and aggressive effort from the Heat. Can the Pacers rise to the challenge and put themselves in position to take the next step?

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Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

A Game 2 win over the Heat with three days off before resuming play in Miami sounds good, no? Also sounds too good to be true. The off-day Pacers repeated a theme of expecting nothing but a champions effort from the Heat in Game 2.

At times in Game 1, it appeared the Heat were experimenting, trying to find an edge for later on while trying to figure out which Pacers team they were up against. Welp, they found out quick the full-throttle, A-game Pacers were back in play. Assuming that same Pacers continues playing at a high level in the playoffs, it becomes a battle of will between differing styles trying to impose their will on one another. The more aggressive team will always have an advantage.

So expect a far more engaged and aggressive LeBron and company at the Fieldhouse trying to make the Pacers blink and give up home court advantage. It appeared in Game 1, Miami was willing to create matchups that favored Lance Stephenson, essentially putting the ball in his hands to make plays and decisions. The idea being, eventually Lance will get on the wrong side of control and disrupt things for the Pacers while giving the Heat a chance to seize on the mistakes. This was also a byproduct of the Heat utilizing small lineups.

Lance was up for the challenge in Game 1 with 17 pionts, 8 assists and only 2 turnovers. The Heat may go bigger, try to apply more pressure on the ball and bring their own style of trying to muck up the Pacers offense. There was very little of that from Miami in Game 1.

For the Pacers, it still comes down to Roy Hibbert and David West remaining stout in the post at both ends and staying out of foul trouble. The Heat will try to change the game and get their Big 3 going in a comfort zone, but they still don't have an answer for the Pacers' size inside. This is no time for Hibbert to shrink to the challenge and make minimal impact. Only with a big game from the bigs will the Pacers have a chance to win in Game 2.

Despite all of the good things that happened in Game 1, the winner on Tuesday night will have control of the series.

Check out the links:

Game Preview: Pacers vs Heat, Game 2 | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Practice: Vogel on Game 1 Win, Game 2 Prep | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS


Practice: Stephenson on Staying In Control | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Keeping Stephenson focused key for Pacers - 1070 The Fan

How the Pacers picked (and rolled) apart Miami in Game 1 - Indy Star


Kravitz: Vogel has to be safe, doesn't he?

Miami Heat went small vs. Pacers and it cost them big - Indy Star

Simmons on the Road: It’s All on LeBron " Grantland

HHH GameTime Preview: Game 2, Miami HEAT Vs. Indiana Pacers - Hot Hot Hoops

Miami Heat, Erik Spoelstra regroup vs. Indiana Pacers in NBA Eastern Conference finals - Sun Sentinel

INDIANAPOLIS: Game 2 adjustments possible for Miami Heat - Miami Heat -

INDIANAPOLIS: Greg Cote: Miami Heat needs Udonis Haslem — and better effort - Greg Cote -

Pacers vs. Heat Game 1: How Paul George helped light up LeBron James -

Roy Hibbert shows why center remains the NBA's most important position -

The Miami Heat Couldn’t Defend the Most Basic Play in Basketball | FiveThirtyEight

Arrest made in Paul George home burglary |

Good morning, it's the NBA's most important day of the year -

The Pacers' Starters Are Dominant Again - 8 Points, 9 Seconds

Dallas Mavericks owner Mark Cuban to wave green flag for Indianapolis 500 - ESPN Dallas

Pacers' surprise scoring exposes Heat 'D' in Game 1

Thunder vs. Spurs Game 1 final score, highlights and reaction -

Report: NBA To Overhaul Replay System - Deadspin

Report: Joakim Noah underwent surgery to remove cartilage in knee | ProBasketballTalk

Charlotte Bobcats officially change name to Hornets, launch new website | The Point Forward -