- Created on Sunday, 10 March 2013 21:01
The 18-game streak ties the seventh longest in NBA history, and is the league's best since the Boston Celtics won 19 straight during the 2008-09 season. Miami will try for No. 19 when it hosts Atlanta on Tuesday night.
The win also gave Miami (47-14) a victory over every NBA team this season. The Heat lost both previous meetings with Indiana.
David West scored 17 of his 24 points in the first half for the Pacers, who fell nine games behind Miami in the Eastern Conference standings. Roy Hibbert scored 15, D.J. Augustin had 14 and Paul George scored 10 for Indiana.
James' previous season-low was 15. He still finished with seven assists and six rebounds for the Heat, who held a 27-15 edge in points off turnovers and finished the game shooting 56 percent compared with 41 percent by Indiana.
Chalmers needed only nine shots to get his 26 points, going 5 for 6 from 3-point range and making all seven of his free throws. He also grabbed seven rebounds, a season high.
There may have been touches of gamesmanship beforehand. Things like the Pacers coming out for warm-ups and choosing the basket that the Heat typically use, or just about every starter keeping those pleasantries before tip-off such as handshakes and hugs at an absolute minimum. And there were moments of physicality: an extra nudge here or there. But nothing near the level of those body-flying, blood-drawing clobberings that came during last season's Eastern Conference semifinals.
Then again, that series was competitive throughout. This game was essentially over just after halftime.
Miami led by nine after the opening quarter, the second-largest deficit the Pacers faced after 12 minutes all season. Indiana hardly folded; the Pacers used a 24-14 run to get within two when West scored with 2:57 left before the half. The margin was still only six in the final minute before intermission.
But the Heat couldn't have scripted a better final 6.9 seconds of the half.
After a deflection sent all the defensive matchups askew, James found himself being guarded 1-on-1 by Hibbert, so he simply drove past the 7-foot-2 center for a slam. Wade then stole the ball from George near midcourt with about 3 seconds left, took a couple dribbles and hit a 12-footer over Hibbert's outstretched arm as time expired, giving Miami a 56-46 lead at the break.
Miami missed its first shot of the second half, then didn't miss another field-goal attempt for eight minutes.
Seven straight makes by Miami fueled what became a 21-7 run, and essentially took away any mystery about the outcome. What was an eight-point game turned into a 77-55 Heat lead, the margin exactly doubling the biggest leads Miami held over Indiana in the first two meetings between the clubs this season - combined.
From there, yes, there were reminders that these teams aren't exactly fond of one another.
FOX SPORTS POLL
Stephenson, who made a choke sign at the Heat during last year's playoffs, then was the subject of a flagrant foul from now-former Heat backup Dexter Pittman later in that series, drove the lane with 3:05 left in the third period and drew a hard foul from Battier. Stephenson remained down for a few moments, and a video review confirmed that Battier made a play on the ball, so anything beyond a common shooting foul wasn't merited.
It might have fired up Indiana a bit as the Pacers scored the final nine points of the third quarter to get within 79-65.
They could have gotten two more points closer if not for a brilliant defensive play by James in the final seconds. George got free for a layup, but James stalked him on the break and swatted away the shot.
NOTES: The 18 straight wins ties for the second-best streak by a reigning NBA champion. Boston won 19 straight in the season after the 2008 title, and the Celtics won 18 in a row after claiming the 1981 championship. ... Chalmers scored 11 points in the first quarter alone, topping his 7.9-per-game season average coming in. ... Pacers coach Frank Vogel picked up a technical early in the fourth quarter.
- Hampden officials say they are working hard to economic development
- Killer mom appeals murder sentence
- Governor withdraws nominess for Education Committee
- A Waterville man is accused of carrying out a terrifying crime
- Officials warn people to leave seal pups alone
- Pulse Marketing holds first web marketing seminar in Bangor
- Evening of romance at BSO Valentine's concert
- DOE looking for summer food program sponsors
- Huge alumni gift for Bates College
- Kennebec County Jail is preparing for major renovations
- Don McLean pleads not guilty
- Tractor trailer accident closes 202
- Chess Tables Coming to Brewer Waterfront
- Rockland man arrested on child porn charges
- Man involved in two high speed chases last week is in custody
- Governor submits state of the state in writing
- Driver allegedly was drinking at time of crash
- Man involved in standoff in court Monday
- Black Lives Matter activist kills self outside Ohio Statehouse, police say
- Report: DMX almost dies from drug overdose
- 'White guilt' video shown to high school students irks community
- The dangerous business of ship salvage
- Virginia teen stabbed to death had talked about running away with suspect
- Caught on video: British man trips suspect running from police
- $220,000 Oscar swag bag includes sex toys, breast enhancements, Chapstick
- Teresa Giudice reveals she attended parties, used ‘spa services’ in prison
- M1 Abrams tank makes cameo in Iranian-backed terror group's video
- Hundreds of California homes, buildings used plans drafted by 2 phony engineers, say authorities
- Candace Cameron Bure is uncomfortable with foul language on ‘The View’
- Man killed by meteorite in India, say government officials
- Top intel official confirms ISIS made, used chemical weapons
- NASA releases stunning 360-degree Mars video
- Liam Neeson admits to dating 'incredibly famous' woman
- North Korean satellite reportedly 'tumbling in orbit,' making it useless
- Texas prosecutor busted for drunken driving
- Sanders closing Clinton's national polling lead, as NH votes
- 19th-century 'Perpetual Mouse Trap' lives up to its name
- Man trapped under avalanche pulled out 6 days later
- Teen stabbed to death had been grounded from social media, dad says
- What kind of America do Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders think we live in?
- 'OITNB' actress Taryn Manning sues NYC for $10M for 'false arrest'
- Iowa Democrats stonewalling on vote totals, but past numbers were available
- 'Frozen' Musical To Make Broadway Debut In 2018
- DMX Has Recovered After Being Resuscitated By Police, Attorney Says
- Kelly Clarkson Releasing Children's Book Named For Daughter River Rose
- Megan Fox Is New 'New Girl,' Filling In For Zooey Deschanel
- Bryan Fuller Named Co-Creator, Showrunner Of CBS' 'Star Trek'
- Ken Watanabe Battling Stomach Cancer, Delays Broadway Return
- First 'Fuller House' Trailer Debuts: 'Damn, We All Still Look Good!'
- 'The Flash': Danielle Panabaker Talks Killer Frost, Deathstorm & Zoom
- Taylor Swift Leads iHeartRadio Award Nominations
- Michael Douglas Among Those Honored By AARP
- Beyonce's Super Bowl Show Bringing Both Praise & Criticism
- Maroon 5 Thanks Taraji P. Henson For Mistaken Super Bowl Shout-Out
- Maroon 5 'Thanks' Taraji P. Henson After Mistaken Super Bowl Shout-Out
- Super Bowl Draws 111.9 Million Viewers, Down From Last Year
- 'The Good Wife' Bosses Talk Ending The Show, Spinoff Potential
- Gwyneth Paltrow Testifies In Stalking Trial, Says Man's Letters Were Upsetting
- Conan O'Brien Heading To Harvard To Give Talk
- 'Monsters, Inc.' & 'Big Hero 6' Screenwriter Daniel Gerson Dies At 49
- Flavor Flav Pleads No Contest To DUI Charge In Las Vegas
- Porn Actress Drops $500K Lawsuit Against Josh Duggar
- 'The Good Wife': CBS Announces Final Nine Episodes
- Beyonce Announces 2016 Tour
- Flavor Flav Due To Face Las Vegas Judge On Misdemeanor Case
- Here Come The Super Bowl 50 Ads
- Tom Brady boasts that he is not one of the best QBs ever
- Peyton Manning's mom explains why it's time for her son to retire
- Report: Off-duty cops hospitalized after alleged altercation involving LeSean McCoy
- Advanced stats will probably love Michigan in 2016
- Audi tearjerker, 'Puppymonkeybaby' among Super Bowl winners
- Offbeat humor and upbeat messages dominate Super Bowl ads
- Breaking news: NASCAR to announce new 'charter' system for teams
- 2nd-seeded Cilic and Dodig advance to 2nd round in Rotterdam
- Jordan Spieth honors Peyton Manning with classic forehead joke after Super Bowl win
- Mets give cap-tip to fellow runner-up Panthers after Super Bowl loss
- Cam Newton's authenticity is highly questionable
- 2016 New York Mets Preview & Fantasy Baseball Draft Prep
- All-Star Bobblehead Series among Marlins promotions in 2016
- Broncos offseason to-do list, starting with moving on from Manning
- Cam Newton's image took the biggest hit of all during the Super Bowl
- Dodgers' Pederson had a great view of Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show
- Paul George says he'll try to score 82 points in final game vs. Kobe
- From behind the lens at Super Bowl 50, Durant captures the other side
- DeMarcus Ware's son stole Deion Sanders' microphone after the Super Bowl
- Comfort wins: Stroman, Blue Jays watch Super Bowl 50 in onesies
- Parker to play with France despite wife's pregnancy
- Ronaldo open to leaving Real Madrid when contract expires
- Tyronn Lue on recent criticism: 'Look, they ridiculed Jesus Christ'
- Bryce Harper shared a laugh with Stephen Curry at Super Bowl 50