It's a different year, with different stakes, and having gone down a different path.

And nonetheless, four games between Miami and Indiana in a playoff series have decided nothing. In these Eastern Conference finals, just as was the case in the second round a year ago, the Heat and Pacers are knotted at two games apiece.

Game 5 is Thursday night in Miami.

The fifth game against the Pacers last season was an absolute romp for the Heat, who never trailed on the way to an easy 115-83 win.

But to Heat coach Erik Spoelstra, that result couldn't be more irrelevant. He insists that the Heat are not comparing this series to last year in any way, and that the experience of last year "doesn't guarantee you anything now."