Editor’s note: After every playoff game the All U Can Heat staff weighs in on the “LeBron James Opt-O-Meter” — the real-time measurement of LeBron’s mood in regards to whether or not he will stay in Miami after he opts out of his contract this summer. It’s not difficult to understand: 1 means he’s gone, like ‘Seeyuh, Miami, I’m going to Los Angeles’ gone. 10 means he’s staying, like already signed the contract in red gel pen staying. Like going in on South Florida-based investments with David Beckham staying. The reading is the average combined rating from the AUCH staff.
5/18 Opt-O-Reading: 7.28
Wes Goldberg: 9. LeBron James coming back has to do with how Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh can help him. Wade did his part, but Bosh was terrible. If the Pacers are truly Miami’s rival in the East now and in the future, Bosh needs to prove he can step up against them.
David Ramil: Surprisingly a 10. Don’t think you can put this on any one person and, despite his pregame speech, LBJ wasn’t a difference maker, either. Free-throw disparity, poor shooting, and terrible defense – particularly by James in the first half – and this was everyone’s fault. He’ll bounce back and hopefully so will the rest of the team.
Blaine Hunkins: 8. LeBron got some help from Dwyane Wade (28 points) and from the Birdman (14 points), but where was Chalmers and Bosh? The Heat are in serious trouble if Bosh can’t contribute on the offensive end!
Ehsan Kassim: 9. Heat got completely outplayed, but I just don’t see Indiana playing this well again. First time over 100 this postseason for the Pacers. It’s just 1-0, Heat will be alright.
Jazmyne Hankerson: 7. Yeah, Miami got outplayed. But not take the kneejerk overreaction route and really can we look back on how many times we’ve lost a “big” game 1 in the Big 3 era? Let’s try the Finals 2012 and 2013. Just a little history lesson: OKC had homecourt that year as well. How many points did they win by in Game 1 that year? 11, same margin of victory for the Pacers today. Yet how many games did it take them to lose the series? Oh just 5. I don’t have this one going past 6. So keep calm Heat fans, keep calm.
Jimmy Cook: 4. LeBron is still staying and all that, but trust me Indiana IS capable of playing like this. The Pacers truly looked more athletic for the first time that these teams have met in the postseason compared to 2012 and 2013. Things that you hope don’t appear again, the disparity from the foul line: 29-37 IND 10-15 MIA. This, to me, showed Indiana played 100x more aggressive then the Heat. The score might have been 107-96, but it was never that close. The only time it was, Chalmers ruined it with a flagrant foul on CJ Watson. Spo put it perfectly for the Heat in the post game locker room: He told them trust is key and if they do hold that trust in one another, they will figure out a way to adjust. That will take place in the next 24 hours. It’s a long series but the major bottom line is this: Paul George and Lance Stephenson out performed LeBron James and Dwayne Wade. If that continues, it means trouble trouble trouble for Miami and could ruin the hopes of a Trey by the Bay.
Chris Posada: 4. Pacers defied physics. I think Larry Bird shot 55% today. But Indy needed this game or else the wheels would have fallen off. Heat take Game 2. It’s going to be OK.