Notebook: Pacers 90, Pistons 72



Posted Feb 23, 2013 11:58 PM

By Dana Gauruder, For NBA.com

THE FACTS: George Hill had 17 points and David West supplied 16 as the Indiana Pacers defeated the Detroit Pistons for the second consecutive night, 90-72, at The Palace of Auburn Hills on Saturday.

Paul George added 12 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists for the Pacers (35-21), who have won four straight by an average of 27 points, including a 114-82 triumph over the Pistons (22-36) in Indiana on Friday. Forward Danny Granger, the Pacers' top scorer the past five seasons, made his season debut in the first quarter. Granger, who was sidelined with a left knee injury, scored two points while going 1-for-10 from the field in 19 minutes. Will Bynum led Detroit with 15 points but was ejected with 8:39 remaining for striking Tyler Hansbrough in the midsection as Hansbrough set a pick.

QUOTABLE: "We understand we're in a tough race and obviously we want to play some good ball, and I think we still can improve. We welcome Danny [Granger] back into the rotation and need to get him going. It's going to take some time because there's nothing like being in an NBA game to get your timing and wind back but he's going to bring a tremendous amount to us."

-- David West

THE STAT: Twenty. The Pistons got one consolation prize: They won't have to see the Pacers again this season. Indiana swept the four-game season series by an average of 20 points. Detroit shot 36.1 percent from the field in those games, including a 33.8 percent outing on Saturday.

TURNING POINT: Indiana led by just one late in the first half before reeling off 12 unanswered points. Roy Hibbert scored six of his 10 points during that span and the Pacers forced four of Detroit's 14 turnovers.

QUOTABLE II: "We knew it was going to be a different game. We knew they were going to play with more physicality. Any time you play a team back-to-back, let alone being the fourth time playing them, they're going to be dialed in to what we do. They came out and made it a game early on."

-- Paul George

HOT: West was averaging 18.3 points on 63.4 percent shooting in the first three games against the Pistons and had another solid night, contributing eight rebounds and four assists to go along with his 16 points. West scored seven points during a 10-4 spurt late in the third after the Pistons pulled within 10 points.

NOT: Detroit center Greg Monroe recorded his 26th double-double this season with 12 points and 12 rebounds, but he scored just four points in the first three quarters and missed 12 of his 16 shot attempts. Monroe was held to five points the previous night by Hibbert and backup Ian Mahinmi.

ROOKIE WATCH: Detroit second-round pick Khris Middleton played a season-high 26 minutes as the backup small forward and had nine points. Starter Kyle Singler had a rough outing with just two points, three rebounds and no assists in 29 minutes.

NOTABLE: Detroit second-year guard Brandon Knight missed his second straight game with a hyper-extended right knee suffered at Charlotte on Wednesday. An MRI on Saturday revealed no structural damage. ...Detroit scored a season low while losing for the third time in four games since the All-Star break. Its previous low was 74 points at Orlando on Nov. 21. ... The Pistons rank first in the Eastern Conference and third overall in points in the paint (46.1 per game), but managed only 24 on Saturday. . ... The Pacers are 11-10 on the road since starting the season 1-6. ... Mahinmi had 10 rebounds as Indiana had a 48-39 rebounding advantage.

UP NEXT: For the Pacers, Tuesday vs. Golden State, Thursday vs. L.A. Clippers, Friday @ Toronto. For the Pistons, Monday vs. Atlanta, Wednesday @ Washington, Friday @ New Orleans.