Miami Bigs Key To ‘Pace And Space’ Mantra

Miami Heat coach Erik Spoelstra uses the phrase “pace and space” about once every 86 seconds in his post-practice, post-shootaround, pregame and postgame press conferences. “Identity” is another one of Spoelstra’s buzz words. And yeah, the Heat want to attack the basket early and often and space the floor with their 3-point shooters.

Those shooters haven’t exactly been hurting the Indiana Pacers in these Eastern Conference finals. Ray Allen and Shane Battier are a combined 4-for-20 from 3-point range through the first three games. Mike Miller has played a little over six minutes.

But more important in this series has been the spacing of the Heat’s big men, who are providing a counter for Roy Hibbert‘s rim protection.

Chris Bosh has as many threes (4) as Allen and Battier combined, and two of those came when he was left open by a helping Hibbert. Five of Udonis Haslem‘s eight buckets in Game 3 came from outside 15 feet.
And then there’s Chris Andersen, who is a perfect 13-for-13 in the series. All 13 of his baskets have come from the restricted area, lay-ups, dunks and tip-ins. But those buckets have been made possible by Andersen’s initial position on those plays.

For more on Miami’s Formula to Success, Source: John Schuchmann,