Rewind: Pacers vs. Jazz 120207
Tuesday, Feb. 7 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse
Game Rewind: Pacers 104, Jazz 99
By Conrad Brunner
It took Danny Granger awhile to get going but he found his stroke just in time.
Granger scored 12 of his 16 points in the fourth quarter as the Pacers recovered after blowing a 21-point lead to pull out a hard-fought 104-99 victory over the Utah Jazz Tuesday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Darren Collison scored a season-high 25 as the Pacers (17-7) once again bounced back from a loss to avoid a losing streak.
The Pacers led 71-50 in the third quarter but Utah rallied to take an 85-84 lead early in the fourth but that's when Granger took over.
BY THE NUMBERS
Collison shot 10-of-14 and added five assists and four rebounds to his 25 points. Roy Hibbert had his 10th double-double with 17 points, 10 rebounds and four blocked shots. Granger, who did not make a basket in the first half, missing his first six shots, wound up 6-of-14 from the field and added five rebounds and three assists. Paul George scored 14.
Paul Millsap led Utah (13-11) with 18. Al Jefferson scored 16, C.J. Miles 12, Gordon Hayward and Devin Harris 11 apiece and Derrick Favors 10.
“A quality win against a really good team. Give them credit for not quitting. We understand big leads are never safe in the NBA. D.C. (Darren Collison) carried us early and Danny (Granger) got hot late. When it came down to it, we made the plays at crunch time." - Pacers Coach Frank Vogel
“We moved the ball well, made passes and got other people open. Danny came through in big fashion in the fourth quarter. He picked us up when we really needed it. Darren was coast to coast and kept us moving the entire game. Teams make runs at you, which we knew they would. But we were able to fight them off and finish what we started.” - Hibbert
“(Sleep medication) had me groggy all day and into tonight. I was a little late and slow on transition plays and just as bit slow overall. It almost cost us but we were able to pull out the fourth quarter and get this done. We knew we could but we just had to play hard and make it happen.” - Granger
"My job is to come in, play hard on both ends of the court and try to make things happen. We had to win this one badly. So I think we worked hard and even during our lapse we kept things in focus. This is one that we should have and did win and did not let get away. Danny really came alive in the fourth quarter for us. It was a total team effort. Everybody contributed.” - Lance Stephenson
STAT OF THE GAME
The Pacers improved to 7-0 after a loss with an average bounce-back victory margin of 10.4 points. They are one of three teams in the NBA (along with the Bulls and Sixers) to avoid consecutive losses this season.
With Collison and George leading the way, the did their usual thing, storming out of the locker room in the third quarter with a 14-2 run to open a 71-50 lead. But then it got unusual in a hurry. Rather than coasting home with a blowout, the Pacers suddenly went cold as Utah extended its defensive pressure, fueling a surge by the offense.
The Jazz hit 11 of 12 shots and outscored the Pacers 35-14 in a span of 12½ minutes to take an 85-84 lead on Josh Howard's free throws with 7:35 left in the game. The Pacers missed 10 in a row bridging the third and fourth periods before Granger broke the drought with a layup with 7:03 left. Added three more mid-range jumpers to stanch the run as the teams began trading the lead, setting up a dramatic finish.
Hibbert's three-point play tied it at 95-all and George hit a 3-pointer from the top of the arc to put the Pacers up 98-95 with 3:03 remaining. The defense then dug in, coming up with four consecutive stops before Collison's running floater made it 100-95 with 50.6 seconds left.
After Josh Howard made two free throws, Granger rose up from the top of the key for his fifth bucket of the quarter, making it a five-point game with 25.7 seconds left. But it wasn't quite over.
Devin Harris drove to make it 102-99 with 17.9 seconds left, keeping the pressure on the Pacers but after a timeout, they got the ball inbounds to Granger, who was fouled and made the clinching free throws with 10.6 seconds left.
Collison was assertive throughout the first half, racking up 17 points on 7-of-9 shooting as the Pacers methodically built a 57-46 lead at the break. Roy Hibbert had his way inside, scoring 12 points on 6-of-7 shooting as the Pacers shot .512 overall and committed just two turnovers. The only Utah player to establish a threat was Jefferson, who scored 12.
Stephenson left briefly in the second quarter to receive treatment on a lower back contusion, but he returned in the third period. … The Pacers will have to wait to regain Jeff Foster's services. The veteran center practiced Monday but his back did not respond as well as hoped. Vogel said Foster would miss at least one more game before being re-evaluated Thursday. Foster missed his 12th consecutive game with a sore lower back. … George Hill (chip fracture, left ankle) missed his fourth in a row. … Butler Coach Brad Stevens was in attendance to see Hayward. So were several of Hayward's former Bulldogs teammates, including guard Ronald Nored and forward Garrett Butcher. … Former Pacers guard Jamaal Tinsley, who is rebuilding his career as a backup with the Jazz, did not make the trip to Indianapolis. Instead, he remained in New York, where the Jazz lost to the Knicks Monday night, to attend to a personal matter. … The Pacers tied a season-low with just eight turnovers. … Paul George led the Pacers with three steals tonight and he has had 11 steals in the last three games.
The Pacers head back out on the road for a two-game trip that begins with the second night of a back-to-back Wednesday in Atlanta. Indiana beat the Hawks 96-84 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse as Granger scored 24. Atlanta's All-Star center Al Horford sustained a torn left pectoral muscle in that game and has been out ever since but the Hawks have managed nicely in his absence, going 9-5 since, but have lost their last three.