lebron james

LeBron James scored 40 points with 18 rebounds and nine assists, and Dwyane Wade added 30 points - 22 in the second half - as Miami rallied to even their semifinal series against Indiana with a 101-93 win on Sunday over the Pacers, who had the defending Eastern Conference champions down couldn’t keep them there.

”I felt like I had to do whatever it took to win,” said James, who played all but four minutes.

With All-Star forward Chris Bosh injured and back in Florida, the James-Wade tag team saved the Heat, who will host Game 5 on Tuesday night at AmericanAirlines Arena.

”Me and ‘Bron had it going,” said Wade, who bounced back from the worst playoff game of his career - five points on 2-of-13 shooting - with one of his best, ”We played off of each other very well. We both were aggressive at the same time. That’s beautiful basketball for the Miami Heat when we play that way.” …

Udonis Haslem, playing with a large bandage covering a nasty cut over his right eye that required nine stitches, added 14 points for Miami…

Wade finished with nine rebounds and six assists, erasing the ugly memory of Game 3 when he also had a confrontation with Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, a public dispute that turned into a bigger deal than it probably was because of a two-day break between games. The next day, Wade, who has refused to blame injuries for his recent struggles, visited his former Marquette coach Tom Crean, who is now at Indiana…

Danny Granger scored 20 and Paul George 13 to lead the Pacers. Center Roy Hibbert, so dominant at both ends in Game 3, had just 10 points and was in foul trouble in the second half…

Miami also got a huge lift down the stretch from Haslem, who hasn’t been a factor in the series but made four big jumpers in the final six minutes despite having his head split by an elbow by Indiana’s Tyler Hansbrough.

– Reported by Tom Withers of the Associated Press

James: 40 points, 18 rebounds, nine assists, two blocked shots, two steals.

Wade: 30 points, nine rebounds, six assists, two blocked shots, one steal.

“Both of those guys knew they had to be actively involved,” coach Erik Spoelstra said.

James had 19 points at the intermission, when the Heat trailed 54-46. He was keeping them afloat.

Wade, by contrast, had opened 1 of 8, rekindling fears of a follow-up to his 2-of-13 performance in the Heat’s Game 3 loss.

But then the two did something they had not done much in this series, or to be honest, all that often in their two years as a dual-wing threat:

They choreographed something magical, playing in a lockstep so desperately needed with power forward Chris Bosh, the absentee of the Big Three, out indefinitely since sustaining a lower-abdominal strain in the first half of the series opener.

“Obviously, we’ve come a long way with that,” Spoelstra said. “We used to be a stand-and-watch-each-other team with those two guys.”

– Reported by Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel

The Heat trailed by 10 points when James delivered a difficult bucket with 3:07 left in the first quarter. From there, he scored nine points in a row to end the first period and then began the process of getting Wade involved in the action.

Just like Game 3, Wade was ice-cold in the first quarter. He failed to score the first 12 minutes just as he failed to score in the entire first half in Game 3. A well-timed assist from James helped change everything — the game’s momentum, Wade’s confidence and perhaps the entire series.

It came with 43.7 seconds left in the first half, a bounce pass from James to Wade on a back-door cut that finally set Wade’s mind at ease. Wade finished the play with a powerful baseline drive-and-dunk to cut the Pacers’ lead to five points.

“I told [James] at halftime that I needed that,” Wade said.

– Reported by Joseph Goodman of the Miami Herald