LeBron James had himself a pretty good third quarter in Game 5 (video)
Dwyane Wade may have nearly been engulfed in flames before the game, but it was his teammate who caught fire during it to lead the way. Heading into halftime of Game 5 of the Western Conference Finals, the Miami Heat and its leader, LeBron James, just came off a lethargic and disappointing first half. The team trailed the Indiana Pacers by a score of 44-40 on its home court.
And that’s when LeBron got angry. And like Bruce Banner — especially if you happen to find yourself either a fan of or a member of the opposition — you won’t like him when he’s angry.
King James tore into his team at the half and then took the game over in the third quarter, scoring 16 of his game-high 30 points as he led the Heat by sheer will, grit and determination to a hard-fought 90-79 victory to take a 3-2 lead in the series.
Before the second half started, LeBron huddled his teammates up and gave them a profanity-laced tongue-lashing, which apparently not only fired his teammates up but lit a spark inside himself as well.
Here’s LeBron explaining to nattily attired (as always) Craig Sager what he had mind when he gathered up the Heat before the third quarter:
And here is every bucket from LeBron’s Jordan-esque third quarter, when he outscored the Pacers himself 16-13:
James also added four rebounds and four assists to his monster third quarter stat line and finished his game for the ages with 30 points, eight rebounds , six assists, two steals and one block.
Heat head coach Erik Spoelstra had nothing but praise for LeBron’s effort during the third quarter, saying, “That’s LeBron showing his greatness and making it look easy,” adding, “His engine in that third quarter was incredible. He was tireless. He was doing things on both ends of the court.”
LeBron explained his second-half heroics: “I just went back to my Cleveland days at that point, and just said, ‘Hey, let’s try to make more plays and be more of a scoring threat as well,’ ” LeBron said. “I was just in attack mode in the third quarter, looking for my shot.”
And man, did he ever find it.
[H/T Pro Basketball Talk]