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Intensity renewed for Heat, Pacers

Miami’s LeBron James, right, caught the physical attention of George Hill, left, and the rest of the Pacers during last season’s playoffs. But now James downplays any notion of a rivalry against the Pacers.

Getty Images (2012)

Miami’s LeBron James, right, caught the physical attention of George Hill, left, and the rest of the Pacers during last season’s playoffs. But now James downplays any notion of a rivalry against the Pacers.

MIAMI — The two early season blowout losses to the Knicks were one thing. That was being beaten over the top with 3-pointers. A style that rarely has succeeded in the playoffs.

But the two lopsided losses this season to the Pacers? That was different. That, as LeBron James called it, was "smash mouth," being outrebounded by more than 17 a game. And that very much is playoff basketball.

That's what makes tonight (6, NBA TV) at AmericanAirlines Arena important to the Heat — its lone home game against Indiana in the three-game season series.

"We're well aware," Miami coach Erik Spoelstra said, "that they've absolutely pounded us and beaten us up."

A week ago, the Heat won at Madison Square Garden over the Knicks. Now the Pacers arrive with Miami riding a franchise-best 17-game winning streak. The Heat leads the East at 46-14, eight games ahead of second-place Indiana at 39-23.

The last time the Pacers were in South Florida was a wild Game 5 of the 2012 Eastern semifinals, a game that featured a vicious flagrant foul from Pacers forward Tyler Hansbrough on Dwyane Wade, with forward Udonis Haslem and since-dealt center Dexter Pittman earning suspensions for retaliatory fouls.

So there could be blood?

"I'm sure they're going to be playing with a little chip on their shoulder from the first two times we played them," Pacers point guard George Hill said. "We're expecting to take their best shot."

But asked if last season's playoff series and this season's results have left the Pacers as a prime rival, James wouldn't bite.

"It's Boston, Chicago more than Indiana," he said. "We've only had one series with those guys. So I would say it's Boston. Indiana is not a rival at this point."

Knicks' Stoudemire hurt: Amare Stoudemire needs surgery on his right knee and is expected to miss six weeks, a blow to the Knicks as they chase the Atlantic Division title. Stoudemire, who had been playing well off the bench, will have the procedure this week, the Knicks said.

Late Friday: Kobe Bryant hit a tying 3 with five seconds left in regulation, then dunked for the go-ahead basket with 10 seconds left in overtime, helping the host Lakers beat the Raptors 118-116 to move a game above .500.

Nets 93, Hawks 80

BROOKLYN (93): Wallace 4-11 1-2 9, Evans 1-2 4-6 6, Lopez 8-16 2-3 18, J.Johnson 4-13 0-0 8, D.Williams 5-13 5-6 17, Blatche 9-11 0-1 18, Bogans 2-5 0-0 6, Teletovic 1-2 0-0 3, Watson 2-4 2-2 7, Brooks 0-0 0-0 0, Shengelia 0-3 0-0 0, Taylor 0-3 1-2 1. Totals 36-83 15-22 93.

ATLANTA (80): Smith 5-12 1-2 12, Horford 7-14 1-2 15, Petro 5-6 0-0 10, Korver 3-7 0-0 7, Teague 2-9 2-2 7, I.Johnson 4-9 1-2 9, Harris 2-5 2-4 6, Stevenson 0-0 0-0 0, Tolliver 0-3 0-0 0, Jenkins 3-7 2-2 10, Jones 0-1 2-2 2, Scott 1-3 0-0 2, Mack 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 32-77 11-16 80.

Brooklyn 23 28 25 17— 93

Atlanta 23 14 20 23— 80

3sBrooklyn 6-23 (Bogans 2-4, D.Williams 2-7, Watson 1-1, Teletovic 1-2, Blatche 0-1, Wallace 0-3, J.Johnson 0-5), Atlanta 5-18 (Jenkins 2-4, Teague 1-2, Smith 1-3, Korver 1-4, Mack 0-1, Harris 0-2, Tolliver 0-2). ReboundsBrooklyn 54 (Evans, Lopez 9), Atlanta 50 (Horford 12). AssistsBrooklyn 20 (D.Williams 6), Atlanta 20 (Harris 9). FoulsBrooklyn 15, Atlanta 20. TechnicalsBrooklyn defensive three second.

Grizzlies 96, Hornets 85

NEW ORLEANS (85): Aminu 2-4 3-3 7, A.Davis 9-20 2-2 20, Lopez 1-5 1-2 3, Vasquez 4-11 4-4 12, Gordon 4-7 2-2 11, Anderson 7-18 2-2 17, Mason 1-4 0-0 2, Miller 0-0 0-0 0, Roberts 4-7 1-2 9, Sims 2-3 0-0 4, Harris 0-0 0-0 0, Thomas 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 34-79 15-17 85.

MEMPHIS (96): Prince 5-11 3-4 13, E.Davis 6-11 0-2 12, Gasol 5-11 0-0 10, Conley 8-15 5-5 22, Allen 5-9 4-4 14, Wroten 1-5 0-0 2, Pondexter 4-8 3-4 13, Bayless 4-9 1-1 10, Daye 0-1 0-0 0, Leuer 0-1 0-0 0, Pittman 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 38-81 16-20 96.

New Orleans 19 22 19 25— 85

Memphis 25 22 31 18— 96

3sN.O. 2-12 (Gordon 1-1, Anderson 1-5, Aminu 0-1, Vasquez 0-1, Roberts 0-1, Mason 0-3), Mem. 4-13 (Pondexter 2-6, Bayless 1-2, Conley 1-4, Wroten 0-1). ReboundsN.O. 48 (A.Davis 18), Mem. 46 (E.Davis 9). AssistsN.O. 17 (Vasquez 8), Mem. 21 (Conley 8). FoulsN.O. 19, Mem. 16. TechnicalsN.O. defensive three second.

Knicks 113, Jazz 84

UTAH (84): Carroll 1-3 0-0 3, Favors 2-5 0-0 4, Jefferson 3-9 1-2 7, M. Williams 3-8 1-1 8, Foye 2-10 0-0 6, Tinsley 2-6 1-2 6, Hayward 3-8 5-6 13, Ma.Williams 3-6 1-1 7, Kanter 4-7 2-2 11, Burks 5-12 4-5 14, Evans 1-1 1-2 3, Watson 0-0 0-0 0, Murphy 1-3 0-0 2. Totals 30-78 16-21 84.

NEW YORK (113): White 1-3 0-0 3, Thomas 2-4 0-0 4, Chandler 2-4 2-2 6, Felton 6-10 2-2 15, Shumpert 1-3 8-10 10, Martin 4-6 2-2 10, Smith 10-18 0-2 24, Kidd 0-5 2-2 2, Novak 7-12 1-1 20, Camby 0-2 0-2 0, Prigioni 1-2 4-4 7, Copeland 4-6 3-3 12. Totals 38-75 24-30 113.

Utah 21 17 21 25— 84

New York 25 30 23 35— 113

3sUtah 8-26 (Hayward 2-6, Foye 2-7, Kanter 1-1, M. Williams 1-2, Carroll 1-2, Tinsley 1-3, Murphy 0-1, Burks 0-2, Ma.Williams 0-2), N.Y. 13-32 (Novak 5-10, Smith 4-8, White 1-2, Prigioni 1-2, Copeland 1-2, Felton 1-3, Kidd 0-5). ReboundsUtah 46 (Ma.Williams, Kanter 7), N.Y. 50 (Chandler 9). AssistsUtah 13 (M. Williams 4), N.Y. 21 (Prigioni 5). FoulsUtah 23, N.Y. 19. TechnicalsTinsley, Martin, Smith, N.Y. defensive three second.

Wizards 104, Bobcats 87

CHARLOTTE (87): Kidd-Gilchrist 1-4 0-0 2, McRoberts 2-4 0-0 4, Biyombo 1-6 0-0 2, Walker 11-25 4-5 29, Henderson 5-15 7-8 17, Haywood 5-7 0-2 10, Adrien 1-5 1-2 3, Gordon 4-10 4-4 13, Taylor 1-2 0-0 3, Williams 0-0 2-2 2, Mullens 1-1 0-0 2. Totals 32-79 18-23 87.

WASHINGTON (104): Webster 7-13 2-2 20, Nene 6-12 7-11 19, Okafor 2-7 2-2 6, Wall 6-11 0-1 13, Temple 1-4 0-0 2, Ariza 7-11 7-8 26, Seraphin 4-7 1-2 9, Price 1-2 2-2 4, Singleton 0-0 0-0 0, Booker 1-2 2-2 4, Vesely 0-0 1-2 1, Martin 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 35-70 24-32 104.

Charlotte 24 18 22 23— 87

Washington 27 32 21 24— 104

3sChar. 5-15 (Walker 3-9, Taylor 1-1, Gordon 1-3, McRoberts 0-1, Henderson 0-1), Wash. 10-18 (Ariza 5-8, Webster 4-8, Wall 1-1, Price 0-1). Fouled OutMcRoberts. Rebounds Char. 43 (Biyombo, Haywood 7), Wash. 52 (Okafor, Ariza 10). Assists Char. 19 (Walker 6), Wash. 23 (Wall, Price 6). Fouls Char. 21, Wash. 26. Technicals Char. defensive three second 2.

Intensity renewed for Heat, Pacers 03/09/13 [Last modified: Saturday, March 9, 2013 11:15pm]
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