The Eastern Conference Finals are set up to be a dogfight. If you didn’t know it already, perhaps it all became clear when Indiana Pacers star Paul George received a concussion in a game two loss. And he’s still going to play in game three.

George knows the magnitude of game three, which will tip off at 8:30 PM ET on Saturday night. The only question is, will his presence make a difference with the series shifting to Miami? If he plays anything like he did in game two on offense, perhaps not. But if he can keep up his intensity in his coverage of LeBron James, then he just might.

George is just the tip of the iceberg with the Pacers, however. We usually know what we’ll get out of him. The real question comes down to center Roy Hibbert and George’s supporting cast. That, and whether or not the Heat are going to go nuts now that they’re at home.

We’ve seen two different games so far in this Eastern Conference Finals series. We saw the Pacers do as they pleased inside and out in a relatively easy game one win, and then we saw them lose a low-scoring battle of their own liking in game two.

Indiana could easily be up 2-0 in this series, but here they are, facing a potential 2-1 hole with a trip to Miami in game three.

Preventing a fall into that hole won’t be an easy task, either, as the Heat have gone 5-0 at home during these playoffs and haven’t lost a playoff game on their home court in eight straight tries. In fact, since King James came into town, the Heat are a remarkable 35-7 on their own floor during the playoffs.

With that said, Indiana is responsible for two of those home playoff losses, and remains one of the few teams that can get the better of Miami.

How does Indiana do that tonight? It’s going to have to start on the defensive end. The Heat shot 50% from the floor in game two, and they understandably won. Roy Hibbert must continue to be a factor on offense to keep the Pacers balanced, but he also will need to find ways to be a thorn in Miami’s side inside the paint.

If the Pacers can execute on offense better than they did and game two and play their usual solid defense, they just might be able to snag one of those rare road wins in Miami tonight.

Pick: Pacers 95, Heat 93

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