The Miami Heat are through to the second round of the 2020 NBA playoffs after completing their first series sweep since they dispatched the Charlotte Hornets in 2014, beating the Indiana Pacers 99-87 in the Orlando bubble on Monday night.
Goran Dragic, sensational for the Heat in these playoffs after replacing Kendrick Nunn in the starting lineup, came up huge again despite an awful first half in which he only scored three points. He exploded to life in the second to score a total of 23 points and lead all scorers for Miami.
The Heat, though, got a scare in the first quarter when Jimmy Butler left the game with a shoulder strain after six minutes of play. The All-Star forward sat out the rest of the period, as well as the second quarter, but returned to start the second half and was able to finish the game.
Bam Adebayo recorded his third playoff double-double in Monday’s game with 14 points and 19 rebounds. The youngster was pretty disappointed to learn he was only one shy of matching Shaquille O’Neal’s postseason record of 20 boards at the end of the contest and jokingly blamed head coach Erik Spoelstra in his post-game interview.
The Heat will get a bit of rest as they await the outcome of the series between the Milwaukee Bucks and Orlando Magic. The 3-1 Bucks could wrap things up by Wednesday and their second-round affair with Miami could start as early as Friday.