Notebook: Pacers 88, Grizzlies 83



Posted Dec 31, 2012 6:50 PM

By Conrad Brunner, for NBA.com

THE FACTS: The plan entering the game was to get the big guy going. As it turned out, the smallest guy on the team wound up having the bigger impact. In his first start of the season, D.J. Augustin racked up 17 points, including seven in a row for the Pacers down the stretch, as Indiana rallied from a 12-point third-quarter deficit to beat Memphis 88-83 Monday afternoon at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. With 7-foot-2 center Roy Hibbert coming off a scoreless game in a loss to Atlanta, the Pacers wanted to work the post matchup but he struggled against Memphis' Marc Gasol, shooting 3 of 11. But Augustin, pressed into the lineup when George Hill was unable to play through a bruised thigh, had by far his best game with the Pacers and provided a huge lift. His 3-pointer with 2:07 left put Indiana up 82-76 and after Memphis scored five in a row to cut it to a one-point game, Augustin hit four straight free throws to keep the Grizzlies at bay. Zach Randolph led Memphis (19-9) with 21 points and 15 rebounds.

QUOTABLE: "That's a really good team win for our guys. D.J. Augustin stepped up and played an exceptional game. I'm proud of the effort and grit to beat a really good basketball team."
-- Pacers coach Frank Vogel

THE STAT: Though they moved back into first place in the Central Division with an 18-13 record, the Pacers won just their third game against teams currently in playoff position, against 10 losses.

TURNING POINT: Memphis dominated inside most of the game, using a 13-1 run fueled by Randolph and Gasol to build a 57-47 lead in the third quarter. But Tyler Hansbrough and Ben Hansbrough brought a big infusion of energy and aggression off the bench and the Pacers put together a 14-2 run bridging the third and fourth periods to take a 70-69 lead and put the Grizzlies on their heels.

QUOTABLE II: "When you play the amount of minutes I played you get in more of a rhythm, a flow. I felt I got in a good rhythm tonight."
-- Augustin

HOT: Augustin entered the game shooting .267 overall and .216 from the 3-point line but made 4 of 7 from the arc. Paul George scored 21 with six rebounds and five assists and played strong defense against Rudy Gay. Indiana's Lance Stephenson had his fifth consecutive double-figures scoring game with 10 points, adding seven rebounds.

NOT: Gay shot 3 of 17 overall and was 0 of 6 in the fourth quarter.

QUOTABLE III: "We got a little selfish in the fourth quarter. We made a lot of bad turnovers and didn't continue to play our transition game."
-- Memphis guard Mike Conley

GOOD MOVE: With the Pacers clinging to a one-point lead in the final minute, Augustin and David West ran a pick and roll that was defended well, but the point guard made something out of nothing with a quick drive that drew a foul and he made both free throws to make it 84-81 with 29 seconds remaining.

BAD MOVE: With the ball facing a three-point deficit late in the game, Conley and Randolph ran a pick and roll that drew a serious switch mismatch with Augustin defending the Memphis power forward. But instead of feeding the ball inside, Conley took a terrible 3-point shot over West that bounced off the front rim and led to an Indiana runout that produced a 3-pointer for Augustin -- Conley's man -- that put Indiana up 82-76 with 2:07 remaining.

NOTABLE: The Pacers snapped a five-game losing streak to the Grizzlies. ... Indiana has won five of six and 14 of 20. ... This was the third time the Pacers came back from a double-digit deficit in the second half to win. ... Indiana shot 48 percent on 3-pointers (12 of 25) but just 36 percent (16 of 45) inside the arc, and 32 percent (9 of 28) in the paint, where Memphis held a 44-18 scoring advantage. ... It was the first time this season the Pacers failed to score at least 20 points in the paint. ... Randolph's double-double was his 22nd of the season. ... Hill missed the game after aggravating a thigh contusion late in a loss in Atlanta Saturday. Hill played 33 minutes and scored 15 points against the Hawks and was in uniform Monday but did not play. ... Sam Young returned after missing two games with the flu for Indiana.

UP NEXT: For the Pacers, Wednesday vs. Washington, Friday @ Boston, Saturday vs. Milwaukee. For the Grizzlies, Wednesday @ Boston, Friday vs. Portland, Sunday @ Phoenix.