It’s more than that.
Don’t say what happens this evening at American Airlines Arena won’t mean anything if these teams meet again in the playoffs.
The best two teams in the Eastern Conference.
One is on a 17-game winning streak.
The other is the last team to beat it 38 days ago, and holds a 2-0 lead in the season series.
Something has to give.
The Indiana Pacers, who feel under-appreciated, against the Miami Heat, the team with all the flashiness and the best player walking this planet.
“I’m real excited for this game,” Pacers swingman Paul George said. “It should be a fun one. It’ll be like Christmas Eve; I won’t be able to sleep. I’m really up for this one.”
South Beach has been the center of the NBA since LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh decided to join forces almost three years ago.
The Pacers have played with a chip on their shoulder since James and Wade took the series from them last spring with performances that had everybody (except Pacers fans) wanting more.
“(We came into the season with the mindset of proving) we can beat them because of how that playoff series ended,” Pacers power forward David West said.
To say these teams don’t care for each would be an understatement.
There has been lots of trash talk. Hard fouls. Flagrant fouls. Even a suspension during their playoff series last season.
“They’re as chippy as any team in the NBA,” Heat forward Shane Battier said. “There always are a couple of extracurriculars in there. We don’t back down from anybody.”
How the Pacers play against the Heat can be looked at as a sign of respect despite the teams not caring for each other.
“You can’t be the one that lets them hit you first,” Pacers point guard George Hill said. “You have to play with an edge and chippiness because they’re the best team in the NBA for a reason. They’re the world champs. You go into the game respecting that and knowing you have to bring your best, and that’s what we do.”
The Pacers were supposed to be long shots against the Heat in their first two meetings because they were without Danny Granger (knee), their leading scorer for the past five seasons.
They instead relished the challenge, grabbed hold of it and dictated how the games would be played.
George used Granger’s absence in his favor, outplaying James in the first meeting and playing him evenly in the second game.
West has bullied Miami’s marginal frontcourt players to average 22 points in the two games. Roy Hibbert has done a good job anchoring the paint on defense. The Pacers have outrebounded the Heat by an average of 17 a game in the two meetings.
James referred to the Pacers’ style of play as “smash-mouth,” something that should put a smile on coach Frank Vogel’s face.
The Pacers not only won both games, they won them by double digits.
“Whatever team has beaten us, especially since the break, we’ve tried to redeem ourselves and play a lot better,” Wade said. “Obviously, the first game, they smacked us pretty good. The second time, we had a chance, but they did more than us to win the game. So now, it’s our turn, being at home, to come out and take care of business.”
Paul George was born on May 2nd, 1990 according to http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paul_George_(basketball)
May 2nd, 1990
5 + 2 +1+9+9+0 = 26 = his life lesson = Fans. Popular. Telegenic. In the news. Making headlines.
May 2nd, 1990
5 + 2 = 7 = his core number = Stoic. Self-control.
May 2nd, 1990
2 +1+9+9+0 = 21 = his “secret” number = Seeing the big picture.
May 2nd, 1990
5 + 2 +2+0+1+2 = 12 = his personal year (from May 2nd, 2012 to May 1st, 2013) = Phenomenon. Reversals. Wait and see. Seeing is believing.
12 year + 4 (April) = 16 = his personal month (from April 2nd, 2013 to May 1st, 2013) = Shocks. Surprises. Stunning. Amazing. Unprecedented. Expect the unexpected.
using the number/letter grid:
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9
A B C D E F G H I
J K L M N O P Q R
S T U V W X Y Z
A = 1 J = 1 S = 1
B = 2 K = 2 T = 2
C = 3 L = 3 U = 3
D = 4 M = 4 V = 4
E = 5 N = 5 W = 5
F = 6 O = 6 X = 6
G = 7 P = 7 Y = 7
H = 8 Q = 8 Z = 8
I = 9 R = 9
7133 756975 53
his path of destiny = 53 = Offense. Having a warrior spirit.
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