Wednesday, January 23rd at 10 PM EST at the Rose Garden
Game Rewind: IND (26-17) at POR (21-21)
by Scott Agness | January 22, 2013
The Pacers take great pride in their defense, which can be suffocating at times and often holds opponents in the 80s. But not even the NBA’s best defensive team couldn’t slow the Portland Trail Blazers Wednesday night. They shot their way out of a six-game losing skid to beat the Pacers for the fourth-straight time at the Rose Garden, 100-80.
The game was tight throughout the first with neither team leading by more than five. Then in second, the Blazers broke the game open with a 22-4 run. Forward LaMarcus Aldridge gave Indiana problems all game. He knocked down all but one of his eight shots for 14 points in the second. The Pacers’ defense wasn’t cutting it. They were slow to switch on matchups, gave the Blazers too much space and had sloppy fouls.
As a team, the Blazers connected on 11-of-15 shots in the quarter and led by as many as 16 while the Pacers went 6-of-22 (27 percent) from the field. At the half, the Blazers held a 44-32 advantage.
A message was clearly received out of the locker room, as the Pacers scored a quick 10 points to open the half. They just weren’t going to give up that easily. However, each time they cut their deficit to six points, the Blazers rattled off seven points in a row.
Indiana failed to get within single-digits in the final quarter. The Blazers had far too many easy shots around the rim and didn’t shoot below 45 percent in any quarter. Aldridge, as well as rookie Damian Lillard, were stellar and “unstoppable,” according to Pacers coach Frank Vogel.
There were many errors in the Pacers’ play Wednesday but exceptional shooting by the Blazers did them in. Offensively, they’re normally a middle-of-the-road team, averaging 43 percent this season. Tonight was an exception.
The Pacers will spend a couple days in Portland before facing the Utah Jazz for the final time this season on Saturday night.
Inside the Numbers
Paul George scored 15 of his 22 points in the second half. David West went 8-of-15 from the field and had 21 points. George Hill had 11, but was just 1-of-7 from behind the arc.
All five Portland starters finished in double-figures led by LaMarcus Aldridge, who scored a game-high 27 points on 12-of-17 shooting. Rookie Damian Lillard added 20 points and J.J. Hickson finished with 14 points and 13 rebounds.
The Blazers shot a season’s-best 56 percent from the field and held the Pacers to a 38 percent clip.
The Blazers efficiently converted 13 Pacers turnovers into 26 points.
They may have the least-contributing bench in the league but the Blazers’ bench outscored the Pacers’ reserves by four.
The Pacers are 1-6 this season when an opponent scores at least 100 points and the Blazers were the first team to do so in 13 games.
“They came out and played with great desperation. It’s very difficult to come out and play a really good team on a six-game losing streak. They brought the fight to us with their defense. Their defensive energy was great, and their ball movement is something I envy; something that our team needs to get to.” – Frank Vogel on the loss
“They wanted it more than us tonight, and it was evident. You have to give credit to Lillard and Aldridge--- they were just unstoppable tonight…I think we were a little flat. We didn’t just lay an egg, but we weren’t as sharp as we’ve been.” – Frank Vogel on the difference
“They played a little bit more aggressive than we did. We just weren’t there for one another on the defensive end. They shot fifty-something percent…we know we’re better than that defensively. Any time you let a team shoot that good of a percentage from the floor, you really don’t have a chance to win the game.” – David West
“We knew coming in this team was going to challenge us, especially on their floor. They shot the ball well. They had us scrambling, running all over the floor all night. Aldridge did a good job of knocking shots down and getting hot.” – Paul George
Stat of the Game
The Blazers made 63 percent of their 2-point field goals and scored half of their points (50) in the paint.
- Portland’s win ends a three-game losing streak to the Pacers.
- Frank Vogel benched reserve Gerald Green and gave his minutes to rookie Orlando Johnson.
- The All-Star reserves, chosen by the coaches, will be announced Thursday at 7 PM EST. Paul George and David West have a great shot
The Pacers continue their west coast trip on Saturday in Utah at 9:30 PM EST.
Next Home Game
The Pacers return home on Wednesday, January 30 to take on the Detroit Pistons. Good seats are still available. Find Tickets »