Dwyane Wade was back in Miami's 99-76 defeat of Indiana in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals, playing with energy and purpose throughout Miami's series-clinching victory over Indiana.
The highlight of Wade's night was a steal and breakaway dunk with a little less than two minutes remaining in the first quarter.
With Indiana leading 19-17, Wade stepped in front of a kickout pass from Roy Hibbert to Lance Stephenson and immediately took off in transition. Faking Stephenson with a jab to his right, Wade brought the ball over the Pacers guard's head as he stepped back to the left, finishing the play with a two-handed dunk on the run. A chin-up on the rim put the finishing touches on the highlight.
Wade shook off a bone bruise in his right knee that has bothered him throughout the playoffs to finish with 21 points and nine rebounds in 35 minutes.
"Im going to play through pain because this is my job," Wade said. "My team depends on me. Like I said a couple of series ago, I would love to be one of the players who never has to deal with these conversations, never have to deal with these injuries. But that's not my path. I've been through so much away from the game and in the game that I'll find a way. I'll figure it out. Some way, somehow, you give me enough time, I'll figure it out. That's what I was able to do tonight."
Heat coach Erik Spoelstra added: "That's just Dwyane being who he is. He has an uncanny way. All of us have seen him over the years. When you count him out and you need him most, the competition is at its fiercest moment, he's going to be there for you. And he's going to somehow find a way to impact the game."
Miami advances to face San Antonio in the 2013 NBA Finals, where Wade will pursue the third title of his career. Game 1 is set for Thursday. "There will be some moments next series where I won't be looking so great," Wade said. "I'm sure there will be some great headlines out there about myself. I'll continue pushing. I'll continue to try to do what I can to help the Miami Heat win another championship."