Here are the things you need to know before Game 5 starts.
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The Miami Heat blew it in Game 4. They could have come back to Miami with a 3-1 series lead, and the potential to close out this series (and the pesky Indiana Pacers) at home, in front of a raucous Miami crowd. Instead, they come back to Miami with the series tied 2-2, and with any momentum from a huge Game 3 victory nullified by their Game 4 loss.
They come back to Miami with a lot of unanswered questions. Can they rebound? Can they generate production from their superstars (I’m looking at you, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh)? Can LeBron lead this team past a tough Indiana Pacers team?
In addition, it doesn’t help that the referees for tonight’s game will face even more scrutiny than usual after a poorly-called Game 4 — a game which LeBron had much to say about during his post-game interview, openly criticizing some of the refereeing decisions (especially, the fifth and sixth fouls called against him).
All-in-all, it’s going to be a tense affair. The Miami Heat are going to be tense because they knew they blew an incredible opportunity in Game 4, and don’t want to drop one at home (where they haven’t been great) against the Pacers. The Pacers are going to be tense because they don’t want to go down 2-3 in the series. The referees are going to be tense because of the refereeing debacle from Game 4.
Whichever team can conquer their fear of defeat first, will win Game 5, and likely win this series.