Indiana Pacers at Miami Heat (-7.5, 185)THE STORY:
LeBron James and Dwyane Wade lost the third member of their star trio late in the first half on Sunday and completely took things over themselves. They'll need to do the same Tuesday as they entertain the Indiana Pacers in Game 2 of their Eastern Conference second-round series. The Heat will be without the services of forward Chris Bosh, who is out indefinitely after an MRI revealed an abdominal strain.TV:
7 p.m. ET, TNTABOUT THE PACERS:
Indiana cruised past the Orlando Magic in the first round by playing strong team defense and getting over 21 points per game from Danny Granger. The defense worked in the first half of Game 1, but Granger was nowhere to be found. The swingman scored seven points on 1-for-10 shooting in the 95-86 loss. The Pacers had trouble getting much from any of their perimeter scorers in the contest while David West and Roy Hibbert combined for 34 points and 23 rebounds on the inside. West and Hibbert could become even more involved in the offense if Bosh is unable to play on Tuesday.
ABOUT THE HEAT:
James took plenty of criticism for struggling in the fourth quarter throughout last year's playoffs. So far in 2012, James has been at his best down the stretch. The newly-crowned MVP scored 16 of his 32 points in the final frame on Sunday and added 15 rebounds and five assists to his final total. Wade was almost as sharp, finishing with 29 points and four assists and providing one of the highlights of the game with a chase-down block of Paul George on a fast break. The two stars were also part of the strong defensive effort against Granger. Bosh’s injury looms over the rest of the series, but with James crashing the boards, Miami still outrebounded the Pacers, 45-38, in Game 1.
- The Heat are 5-1 ATS in their last six games overall.
- The under is 23-7 in the Heat's last 30 home games.
- The underdog is 24-10-1 ATS in the last 35 meetings.BUZZER BEATERS:
1. James joined Shaquille O’Neil as the only players in Miami history to record at least 30 points and 15 rebounds in a playoff game.
2. The Heat failed to record a 3-pointer (0 for 6) for the first time in franchise playoff history.
3. The Pacers were called for 31 personal fouls in Game 1 - nine more than the Heat.Los Angeles Clippers at San Antonio Spurs (-11, 190.5)THE STORY:
The Los Angeles Clippers have to hope that too much rest will slow the San Antonio Spurs, who enter their Western Conference semifinal series riding a 14-game winning streak. San Antonio swept the Utah Jazz and has had seven days off as it prepares to host the hobbled Clippers in Game 1. The Spurs tied for the league's best home record (28-5), but Los Angeles won twice on the road in dispatching Memphis, including a victory in Game 7.TV:
9:30 p.m. ET, TNTABOUT THE CLIPPERS:
Despite injuries to All-Stars Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, Los Angeles won a decisive Game 7 after blowing a 3-1 series lead. A 27-point comeback in Game 1 set the tone for the Clippers, who got a great performance from their bench in closing out Memphis. Griffin, dealing with a sprained left knee, played fewer than two minutes in the final quarter. Paul (hip) and Caron Butler (fractured hand) also are hurt, so it’s imperative that Los Angeles continues to get strong production from its reserves against the league’s deepest and most balanced team. The Clippers won one of three meetings with the Spurs behind a season high-tying 36 points from Paul.ABOUT THE SPURS:
San Antonio had its streak of 100-point games stopped at 13 in its series-clinching win over the Jazz. Yet, that game also illustrated the daunting task awaiting the Clippers. The Spurs got quiet games from point guard Tony Parker and forward Tim Duncan, but nine players were on the floor for at least 20 minutes. San Antonio’s offensive efficiency has been off the charts – entering the final two games at Utah, the team had averaged more than 114 points during a 12-game stretch. The Spurs also feature a different look since they lost to Los Angeles at home on March 9, adding starting C Boris Diaw and high-scoring swingman Stephen Jackson.TRENDS:
The Clippers are 3-11 ATS in the last 14 meetings.
The Spurs are 37-11-4 ATS in their last 52 games overall.
The under is 4-1 in the Clippers' last five overall.BUZZER BEATERS:
1. Duncan, 36, who averages 19.3 points and 10.7 boards lifetime against the Clippers, is well-rested after playing in only six games since April 17.
2. Los Angeles nailed 14 3-pointers – seven by Mo Williams – in its last win over the Spurs. San Antonio was the league’s top-ranked team from behind the arc in the regular season at 39.3 percent.
3. Parker sat out the loss to the Clippers in March after lighting them up for 30 points one month earlier.