Jimmy Butler scored seven of his 20 points during a pivotal fourth-quarter run to lead the Miami Heat to an 87-82 defeat of the Indiana Pacers on Monday in Indianapolis.
On a night in which offense came at a premium for both teams -- the Heat shot 38.6 percent from the floor and the Pacers shot 35.4 percent -- Butler's late-game eruption spanning just 45 seconds of game time proved a critical aberration.
He accounted for every point in a 7-0 run that turned a 77-75 lead into a nine-point advantage with 2:26 left. It marked Miami's largest lead after coughing up a 19-point advantage in the second quarter.
The Heat pulled ahead midway through the period 43-24 before giving up an 18-2 run. Miami scored just four points over the final 6:07, and its offense continued to struggle as Indiana rallied to take the lead in the third quarter.
The Pacers' own offensive woes -- including shooting just 11 of 39 from 3-point range -- prevented them from leading by any more than five points. By the time Victor Oladipo connected on a 3-pointer near the end of the third quarter, the Heat had a lead they held for almost the entire fourth quarter.
Buddy Hield, who scored a team-high 19, made a 3-pointer in the final minute to pull Indiana to within four points, but the host Pacers could come no closer after Butler's decisive flurry.
Bam Adebayo joined Butler as Miami's only other scorer in double figures. He finished with 22, 15 of which came in the first half. Adebayo also grabbed 12 of his game-high 17 rebounds before intermission.
Andrew Nembhard scored 18 for the Pacers. Myles Turner recorded a double-double of 15 points and 13 rebounds, and Aaron Nesmith added 12 points.
Miami's defense on Tyrese Haliburton was central as the Heat held Indiana's offensive standout to a season-low one point on 0-for-9 shooting from the field -- a game removed from Haliburton hitting his season high of 35 points -- and limiting the NBA's assists leader to six on Monday.
If you choose to make use of any information on this website including online sports betting services from any websites that may be featured on this website, we strongly recommend that you carefully check your local laws before doing so. It is your sole responsibility to understand your local laws and observe them strictly. Covers does not provide any advice or guidance as to the legality of online sports betting or other online gambling activities within your jurisdiction and you are responsible for complying with laws that are applicable to you in your relevant locality. Covers disclaims all liability associated with your use of this website and use of any information contained on it. As a condition of using this website, you agree to hold the owner of this website harmless from any claims arising from your use of any services on any third party website that may be featured by Covers.