Game Day: Utah Jazz at Indiana Pacers (2/07/12)
By Jeff Mezydlo
Posted Feb 7 2012 12:15AM ET
Though the Indiana Pacers expected to play better in their most recent contest, they have no plans of letting that latest defeat linger for too long.
Hoping to avoid dropping consecutive games for the first time this season, the Pacers look to bounce back when they host the struggling Utah Jazz on Tuesday night.
Indiana (16-7) shot a season-low 34.1 percent while scoring its fewest points of 2011-12 in an 85-81 home loss to Orlando on Saturday. The victory snapped the Pacers' four-game winning streak, but it likely won't take away any of their confidence as they remain one of the Eastern Conference's top teams.
"We're going to have those nights," guard Paul George told the Pacers' official website. "We have to regroup, get ourselves together and move on."
Danny Granger scored 19 points and Tyler Hansbrough added 17 off the bench, but the Pacers where held to 14 points in the third quarter while falling for the second time in three home games since opening with five straight victories at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
"This is one of those tough games that we're going to have. I would like to have it back," forward Roy Hibbert said. "This is a game where we made some mistakes and would do things differently and maybe be a little stronger and a little tougher."
Indiana has a chance to do both against Utah (13-10), which has dropped three of four overall and looks to avoid a season-high fourth consecutive road defeat Tuesday. The Pacers, however, have lost eight of the last 10 meetings with the Jazz, including two of three at Indiana.
Granger has averaged 26.2 points on 48.4 percent shooting in his last five games versus Utah.
The Jazz also must find a way to regroup after they fell 99-88 at New York on Monday. Al Jefferson had 22 points and Paul Millsap pulled down 13 rebounds, but Utah was unable to solve a Knicks team without Amar'e Stoudemire and minus Carmelo Anthony for most of the contest.
Utah went 2 of 11 from 3-point range and committed 22 turnovers, prompting coach Tyrone Corbin to believe his team took the short-handed Knicks for granted.
"As you've seen out there, you come in here with that attitude, you're in trouble," Corbin said. "They stuck it to us, really."
The Jazz, who are 2-6 on the road, hoped they at least learned their lesson from Monday's effort.
"We dug ourselves in a deep hole. You can't do that no matter who's on the floor," Jefferson said. "We're all professionals. Everybody is a pro. So no matter they didn't have their star player, they're still a team that you just can't go out there and take for granted."
Jefferson has averaged 21.5 points in the last four games, and 23.8 with 9.3 rebounds in his last four against the Pacers.
Though Millsap was held to nine points Monday, he scored 23 and added 18 rebounds in Utah's 95-84 win at Indiana on Feb. 25. Jefferson had 30 with nine boards in that contest.
Copyright 2011 by STATS LLC and Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and Associated Press is strictly prohibited