Notebook: Pacers 96, Bobcats 88

Posted Jan 13, 2013 12:41 AM

By Conrad Brunner, for

THE FACTS: In the absence of one of the game's hottest young players, the Pacers turned to their reliable veteran. With Paul George sidelined by the flu, David West produced the first triple-double of his career with 14 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists as Indiana fought off a determined effort by Charlotte, 96-88, Saturday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. It was the 10th consecutive home win for the Pacers (23-14), matching their longest such streak since the 2002-03 season. George Hill scored 19 and former Bobcat D.J. Augustin matched his season-high with 18 for Indiana, which also got 17 from Lance Stephenson. Ben Gordon scored 21 off the bench to lead Charlotte (9-27), which lost for the 22nd time in 24 games, while Kemba Walker scored 16.

QUOTABLE: "They were doubling David just about every time he touched the ball and we knew that would open up some things for our 3-point shooters."
-- Indiana coach Frank Vogel.

THE STAT: Of West's 10 assists, six came on 3-pointers.

TURNING POINT: Charlotte trailed just 76-75 midway through the fourth period but Hill scored seven and Stephenson four in an 11-3 run that pushed Indiana's lead to 87-78. West assisted on Stephenson's dunk as well as Hill's corner 3-pointer in that run. He then found Augustin for a clock-beating 3-pointer that made it 90-82 with 1:17 remaining, and whipped a long lead pass to Stephenson for a runout dunk that made it 94-86 with 44.5 seconds remaining.

QUOTABLE II: "I've been close to a triple-double a bunch of times and finally pushed it through tonight."
-- West.

HOT: Stephenson hit 8 of 13 shots, adding seven rebounds and four steals to a solid all-around performance. Gordon hit 9 of 14 for the Bobcats, scing his 21 points in less than 26 minutes. Walker hit 5 of 9 shots. Augustin played a major role in sinking his former team, scoring seven of the Pacers' final nine points. He also hit 4 of 8 from the 3-point line. Charlotte center Bismack Biyombo hit all four of his shots.

NOT: In his first start with the Pacers, Dominic McGuire played 6½ scoreless minutes, missing all three of his shots, and did not return. Gerald Green shot 3 of 12, including 2 of 8 from the 3-point line.

QUOTABLE III: "We couldn't stop them. We were doubling them. David West is a really good passer and he was finding guys and kind of put is in rotations. It was tough to get it back to really close because they were still scoring."
-- Charlotte's Gerald Henderson.

GOOD MOVE: Vogel opted to keep Ian Mahinmi in the game throughout the fourth quarter instead of starter Roy Hibbert because the backup center has greater agility and mobility to defend Walker on the pick-and-roll. Walker hit just two buckets in the fourth quarter, both jumpers, and did little damage in the lane.

BAD MOVE: Starting McGuire turned out to be a mistake. With the team less than a week, the journeyman was obviously pressing to make an impression. With the Pacers disjointed out of the gate, missing their first 11 shots, Charlotte bolted to a 10-1 lead.

NOTABLE: The Pacers had a 14-game home winning streak in the 2002-03 season. ... Indiana has won 13 of 16. ... Indiana shot 8 of 15 from the 3-point line in the first half but 3 of 13 in the second. ... The Pacers were 6 of 26 in the paint in the first half, but 13 of 16 in the second. ... George did not take the team flight to Brooklyn but Vogel did not rule out the possibility he could join the team Sunday in time for the 6 p.m. tip. ... Indiana thus became the sixth team McGuire has started for since entering the NBA in 2007 (his other starts were with the Wizards, Kings, Bobcats, Warriors and Raptors)... Charlotte coach Mike Dunlap shuffled his starting lineup, inserting Henderson in place of rookie Jeff Taylor to boost the offense. Henderson scored 12. ...The Bobcats led after the opening period (24-23) for the first time in five games. ... Stephenson tied his career high with four steals. ... Hibbert has 28 offensive rebounds in the last four games, including eight tonight. ... West's 10 assists tied a career high.

UP NEXT: For the Pacers, Sunday @ Brooklyn, Tuesday @ Charlotte, Wednesday @ Orlando. For the Bobcats, Monday @ Boston, Tuesday vs. Indiana, Friday @ Orlando.