Udonis Haslem Suspended for Game 6, Dexter Pittman Suspended for 3 Games, Hansbrough Gets Off Scot-Free

You may not have heard, but there were three flagrant fouls in Game 5 between the Pacers and Heat. Surprisingly, nobody was ejected. At least two and easily three guys could have been tossed. But they weren’t.

As the league is wont to do, however, it reviewed the infractions and Stu Jackson — the NBA’s Wyatt Earp basically — has handed out some expected suspensions: Udonis Haslem is out for one game for his vicious two-arm smash on Tyler Hansbrough, and Game 3 starter Dexter Pittman will miss three games (no that anyone but him, since it’s without pay, cares) for throwing a Lex Lugar forearm at Lance Stephenson’s defenseless collar bone.

Hansbrough, who clubbed Dwyane Wade on the dome and then raked his eye for good measure, got nothing. His foul, which was originally deemed a “flagrant 1,” was upgraded to a more severe “flagrant 2″ but this is just semantics. It won’t affect his status for Game 6 on Thursday in Indianapolis. He will play.

This is obviously an advantage for the Pacers. Haslem hasn’t had a great season but it was arguably (well, LeBron argued it anyway; I wouldn’t) his four jumpers in the fourth quarter of Game 4 that ensured the Heat won to even up the series at 2-2. With neither he nor Bosh on the court, the Pacers will no longer need to pay any mind to a pick-and-pop possibility after ball screens are set for LeBron or Dwyane Wade. This, of course, won’t much matter if, as in Game 5, Indiana can’t keep Miami from scoring in transition. The Heat out-scored the Pacers 22-2 in transition.

Moreover, Danny Granger’s status for Game 6 remains uncertain. He skipped practice today and plans to try to go tomorrow. In fact, he said his foot would have to fall off for him not to at least try to play. His gung-ho attitude notwithstanding, if his ankle doesn’t allow him to perform near, say, 80% of his normal level, it is going to be very hard for the Pacers to beat a Heat team that has two of the planet’s best players playing at their absolute best. In short, no Haslem and no useful Granger swings the advantage decidedly back into Miami’s court.

For more on my opinions on the fouls (I agree with Stu Jackson penalty-wise), read this.

And if you want to hear me talk on Illinois radio about it (from this morning before the suspensions were decided), listen to the audio below. (via WGEM)

Tags: Dexter Pittman Miami Heat Pacers Vs. Heat 2012 Playoffs Pacers Vs. Heat 2012 Playoffs: Game 5 Pacers Vs. Heat 2012 Playoffs: Game 6 Tyler Hansbrough Udonis Haslem

  • Arky

    It’s probably the fair call in isolation (well, Pittman probably deserved more but no-one cares… arguably suspending him for more games would benefit the Heat as then Spoelstra couldn’t be tempted into putting him on the court again).

    Given the circumstances of the series, where the Pacers have been the provocateurs, I would have suspended Hansborough for a game as well to send a message to the Pacers to keep a lid on it too. Can’t help but think that suspending only Miami players is going to give the green light to some Pacers bench players to do stupid things in game 6.

  • Eli C

    “Haslem hasn’t had a great season but it was arguably (well, LeBron argued it anyway; I wouldn’t) his four jumpers in the fourth quarter of Game 4 that ensured the Heat won to even up the series at 2-2.”

    Four jumpers.

    They won by eight.

    Not the full story, and there’s no feasible argument against Wade and James making those four baskets up by themselves, granted, but Haslem had a return volley for every charge the Pacers made down that particular home-stretch.

    As far as playing well tomorrow…Just pass the damn ball better, that’s really it. There were good looks there, but they were a good pass away, yet the Pacers continually made the worst possible decisions, leading to turnovers, which leads to Wade and LeBron reminding you that they’re the best three.five athletes on the floor (LeBron is at least 2 of everyone else, at least physically, of this I have become convinced, and Wade’s ability to make shots in contact/contortion is superhuman), which, in Miami, leads to a fully awake and fully determined to end your defense to a highlight show that they likely mortgaged their house to see.

  • Facts only

    @Eli C
    The Pacers dont pass the ball well. The stats show that. They are statiscially one of the worst passing teams in the league (assits per game, actually second worse with 18.6 per game). We sit here and say they need to pass the ball better, but they flat out dont pass well. It comes down to limiting turnovers and not shooting jump shots. Attack the rim, slow the game down. Make free throws and hope they dont shoot well…

  • Joe B

    So my first meaningless prediction of Pacers in 6 is off…In other news, the Heat lose two big men and now have to rely solely on Turiaf and Anthony to avoid foul trouble and hit shots, which is not a long shot, but a short brick. Zing

  • Havoc

    @Joe B
    You forgot Eddy curry. Would be interesting to see what he can offer. Defeinsively, probably not much but he showed flashes of some post moves when he cameod in some games this yr.

  • little B

    Surprised about the Haslem suspension, but deserved. I just hope the Pacers don’t do something stupid tonight to tarnish their season. Just go out and whoop some ass and make it go 7.
    My guess the whistles this game will be blown before the foul is even commited. Just as long as Hibbert and West don’t get in foul trouble the Pacers should win this one with ease, but that is going to be hard to imagine because Wade and James will probably just drive every chance they have the ball because they will get every call tonight. The way the Pacers need to match it is drive everytime to the hoop…This means you G2.
    Why does Paul George step up and drive when the game isn’t on the line? No confidence, or because defense lets up when he decides to?
    I think this game souly drives around Rebounds, big men not getting in foul trouble, and finally George Hill’s ability to control the offense. He has done a horrible job this series. If their isn’t a good looking play beat chalmers and take it to the rack tonight, draw a foul or dish it to Hib or West for an easy bucket.

  • Realistic

    @little B
    Not to say you are wrong, but easy win against the red hot heat that have smashed us the last 6 quarters? LeBron is playing out of his mind and with Granger being hobbled; do you think he can guard him? Anybody who has sprained their ankle knows how it is tough to explode and have full mobility with an ankle injury like Granger’s. You are right; two things need to happen if they want to win the game. One, avoid foul trouble. Two, West and Hibbert need to shoot more and shoot efficiently.
    @Joe B
    Pacers in 6? Really? The Heat are at a totally different level than us – however, the door is slightly open without Haslem. I just don’t have much respect for Pacers fan that aren’t realistic. Like your team, but lets me realistic. They are beating us without Bosh and if LeBron doesn’t miss 4 FT’s in the 4th quarter in game 3, the series is over.

  • CanePhin

    For Pacer fans the worst thing that could happen was for Miami to have Haslem suspended for this game. Why? Because the refs have been told to take charge from locker room to locker room. No Bull even in warmups. Look straight ahead, don’t even glare in the direction of the opponent or it will be Tech fouls to starat the game.

    This will be a green light for LBJ and DWade to take off toward the rim. If they touch or make contact with you in anyway it will be a foul! This game will have more whistles in the first 8 minutes than anything you have seen since the Palace days!

    Add the Pacer injuries to that equation and you have a Pacer nightmare and season ending loss at home to the HEAT!!!

  • little B

    @ Realistic,
    Don’t forget the Pacers won by 19 in Game 3, and could have pounded it on more like Miami did Game 5, but the Pacers go the other route and run out the clock instead of running up the score.
    Also your comment at Joe B about game 3, I assume is referring to Game 2. Pacers won by 3 in game 2 and won by 19 in game 3 so 4 free throws dont do anything to game 3. And if you are talking about game 2 the free throw shooting in the 4th quarter of that game went like this: Pacers 6/12 Miami 5/10. So if both team hits all of their free throws in that quarter pacers win by 4 instead of 3…so your realistic approach doesnt work there. Realistically Pacers are a better shooting free throw shooting team than Miami and realistically Lebron has a record of missing clutch free throws. Not to say your wrong or anthing…

  • Realist

    I’m not crazy about this Realistic guy. At least my name’s not Mike.

  • little B

    @ CanePhin,
    You’re absolutley correct on this most likely plays into the Heat favor, but the Pacers could make it work in their favor. With only a couple big guys left on Miami’s roster, Pacers just need to drive to the rack and hopefully the whistles will be called evenly(alot of hope there). Pacers are a better shooting free throw team. They could win this game at the line.

  • CanePhin

    @ little b

    I agree in theory, but for whatever reasons, the Pacers have not shown the maturity or discipline to take it inside consistently. They always fall in love with the 3point shot or jump shots. If Hibbert does not have 25 touches with this Miami lineup and another 15-18 for West, this game will get out of hand very early.

  • Question!

    @little B or anyone!
    Great points. What did you pick the series in? What is the result if Bosh plays the whole series? I personally have a tough time it going longer than 5, 6 with Bosh. I see that they have two top 5 players and we have don’t have a top 20 player. Scares me. Plus who is going to shut down LBJ? Granger is going to be really limited tonight. Just wondering! Go Pacers!

  • Mr. Bleedy Dick

    BUY TICKETS THERE ARE THOUSANDS LEFT ON STUB HUB

  • little B

    @Question!
    With Bosh in I thought the series would go 6 atleast, with Miami winning. But I would not have been surprised if the Pacers had won series even if Bosh was in. With Bosh out I thought the Pacers would win in 6…looks like I was wrong.
    Watching how the Heat do their lineup and how long Wade and James play it changed the idea “the Pacers depth is so much better”. When their bench hardly ever plays the advantage doesnt work.
    If you look at the first 4 games the Pacers starters go out on fire and only once they let the lead slip away. Games 1 and 2 the Pacers lost their leads due to the Bench being cycled in while Miami still had their starters in. Game 3 was a blowout and Game 4 the Starters lost in in the 3rd quarter.
    Vogel and the players have alot to learn from this series. Vogel needs to prepare his starters to be able to play 40 mintues a game and not 33 before the playoffs. Lebron and Wade are too good to have any bench player guarding them. Only way this stratedy works out for Vogel is if Miami gets jelly legs these last 2 games with the amount of time they are playing. Lebron is averaging over 41 minutes a night (thats with his low of 38 minutes in a blowout in game 5 so its more in the 42:30 range).
    Danny averaged just over 33 minutes in the regular season is playing nearly 40 minutes a night in this series not including game 5. Playing an extra 7 minutes a game and also defending the best player in the league? it appears a strategy needs reviewed.

  • Question

    @little B
    Good points, i just feel like Lebron is the most freakish athlete ive seen in person and he doesnt seem to get tired (as WE ALL HOPED!) Watching this series made me realize how nice it would be if you flipped DG and LBJ. The talent level difference between someone like LBJ who affects the game in 4-5 different ways and DG is HUGE. I thought danny had a chance at limiting LBJ. Lets hope lebron has one of those 5-16 nights and is cold. Hope DG ankle holds up – that is still my biggest worry.

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  • Havoc

    I guess 2 guys can beat a 10 deep team. That was all the talk wasn’t it.. that pacers were more of a team than MIA. it was an intriguing series though