Inside the Game: Pacers 105, Bucks 97 080406

Simply took over the game in the fourth quarter, scoring 15 of his 18 points, all on 3-pointers, and adding three assists, a steal and a charge taken as the Pacers wiped out a 10-point deficit and won going away.

Name Min. +/- Name Min. +/-
Marquis Daniels 27:35 +6 David Harrison DNP ---
Travis Diener 24:20 +17 Troy Murphy 24:14 -4
Ike Diogu DNP --- Jermaine O'Neal 20:15 +5
Mike Dunleavy 42:02 +15 Andre Owens DNP ---
Jeff Foster 32:26 +11 Kareem Rush DNP ---
Stephen Graham DNP --- Jamaal Tinsley DNP ---
Danny Granger 40:03 +7 Shawne Williams DNP ---
Flip Murray 23:40 -9

  • Points in the paint: Bucks 50, Pacers 40
  • Fast-break points: Pacers 15, Bucks 8
  • Second-chance points: Bucks 14, Pacers 12
  • Points off turnovers: Pacers 16, Bucks 5
  • Starters scoring: Bucks 86, Pacers 81
  • Bench scoring: Pacers 24, Bucks 11

  • This completed the Pacers' fifth set this season of consecutive games against the same opponent (Detroit, New Jersey twice and the Bucks). That equals the total of home-and-home sets of the previous three seasons.

    An opportunity to not only gain ground in the playoff chase but secure the season series awaits Tuesday in Conseco Fieldhouse when the Pacers host the eighth-place Hawks (7 p.m., FSN-Indiana, 1070 The Fan).

  • Audio: Jim O'Brien's postgame press conference
  • Season plus-minus rankings
  • Recap |
    Box score
  • Indiana 105, Milwaukee 97

    Diener time arrives in fourth quarter

    By Conrad Brunner | April 6, 2008

    Down 10 entering the fourth quarter, their normally reliable shooting touch gone, their dwindling playoff hopes fading into the mist, the Pacers were in need of something big. It was provided by the smallest man on the roster.

    Travis Diener scored 15 of his 18 points in the fourth quarter, adding three assists, a steal and a charge taken, as the Pacers quickly turned the game around and beat Milwaukee 105-97 before 12,107 Sunday in Conseco Fieldhouse to complete a weekend home-and-home sweep of the Bucks.

    "He had a terrific fourth quarter, not only offensively but defensively, too," said O'Brien. "He was the spark we needed and we really needed a spark."

    It marked the third time this season the Pacers have overcome a double-digit fourth-quarter deficit to win.

    "I feel really lousy that we're not locked in the playoffs," O'Brien said. "Our resilience and attitude have been great all year. Our guys are clawing. They know they pretty much have to pitch a shutout and they're trying with everything they have."


    With their fourth win in five games and eighth in 11, the Pacers (33-44) remained three games behind eighth-place Atlanta (36-41) in the Eastern Conference playoff race, with the teams meeting Tuesday in Conseco Fieldhouse.

    "I will be looking forward to (that game), maybe tomorrow," O'Brien said. "Right now, I'm looking forward to enjoying this one."

    The Bucks (26-50) lost their seventh in a row in Conseco Fieldhouse.


    The Pacers shot miserably in the second and third periods, going 15-of-49 from the field (.306) and 4-of-17 from the arc (.235). They made just one basket in the final 6½ minutes of the third quarter and Milwaukee closed the period on an 11-3 run to take a 77-67 lead into fourth.

    That's when Diener time arrived. The reserve point guard hit consecutive corner 3-pointers. Mike Dunleavy, 1-of-6 from the arc to that point, hit two in a row, and then Diener drained one from the top of the arc to complete a stunning 19-1 run that gave the Pacers an 86-78 lead with 7:27 remaining. The Bucks missed their first eight shots of the period.

    Milwaukee scored five in a row to close to 96-89 with 3:27 left but Diener fed Jeff Foster for a layup and followed with a pull-up 3-pointer in transition to make it 101-89 and the Bucks were done.


    Diener was the most obvious standout, totaling 18 points – all in the final 15 minutes – five rebounds and five assists, but he was not alone. Foster had a strong night with 16 points on 8-of-11 shooting and 15 rebounds. Danny Granger struggled with his long-range shot (1-of-8 from the arc) but drove aggressively and produced 27 points, seven rebounds, three steals, two assists and two blocks. Dunleavy finished with 17 points, seven assists and five rebounds and Troy Murphy scored 13. Jermaine O'Neal pulled nine rebounds in 20 minutes off the bench. The Pacers shot 13-of-21 (.619) in the fourth quarter, including 7-of-10 from the 3-point line, and held the Bucks to 8-of-22 shooting (.364).


    There was little to like through three periods as the Pacers struggled badly with their perimeter shooting and didn't play well enough defensively to compensate The Bucks got solid games from Michael Redd (24 points, seven rebounds) and Charlie Villanueva (22 points, 13 rebounds). Andrew Bogut produced 16 points, 14 rebounds and three blocks. Desmond Mason scored 16, Bobby Simmons 11 off the bench and rookie Ramon Sessions had a career-high 10 assists in his first start.


    The Bucks played without starting point guard Mo Williams, out with an injury to his pelvis. ... Diener has 45 assists against five turnovers in the last nine games. ... Indiana committed just eight turnovers, three in the second half.


    “We knew the shots would start falling. We got good looks the whole game. Travis brought energy and great shooting. He had a terrific fourth quarter, not only offensively but defensively. He was the spark we needed and we know we needed a spark in the fourth quarter. Our guys got to a pretty high level defensively in the fourth quarter. I feel good about our resilience and attitude. Our guys are clawing knowing they pretty much have to pitch a shutout. They’re very hungry to get in the playoffs. They’re all disappointed we don’t have a better record. But I’m proud they’ve stayed with it.”


    “At the end of the third quarter when we were down, it was almost and indication that our playoff chances were gone. So it was time as a team that we raised our game and we did. We started getting good looks and we were playing stronger down the stretch. We knew this was a game we had to have. I take it upon myself as a point guard that I should be the one to provide a lift. And when I hit my first shot in the fourth quarter, things really seemed to start falling into place. A big difference in us the last few weeks is that we’re making more plays down the stretch. Earlier we weren’t but I think now we’ve really come together as a team.”


    (On Travis Diener) "He really got us over the hump and hit some big shots for us to earn this victory. But now we have a big game Tuesday that we must win."

    (On difference between first three quarters compared to the fourth) "We just said in the huddle that we can’t afford to lose this game. We all want to win and it was great the way that we played down the stretch to close it out for the win.”


    “Guys want to take it upon their own shoulders. We lost a lot of our energy due to our shot selection."

    (On the Pacers) "They got out and rolled. They got it heated up in the fourth quarter."

    (On Jeff Foster) "Great night. He puts his hard hat on every night. Every team needs a guy like him. This game can change really quickly. The momentum is a crazy thing in this game.”


    (On Travis Diener) "He had 15 of his 18 in the fourth quarter? My goodness. He went nuts. He was hitting threes everywhere, pushing the ball up the court and getting other guys shots. He did a great job. I don’t know what their field goal percentage was in the fourth quarter…it had to be 65-70 percent. They did a great job. The majority of it was threes. It was tremendous on their part. Jeff Foster was instrumental to what they did. He works hard and knows his role.”


    (On Travis Diener) "He definitely got hot. He was knocking down threes all over the place. On our end, we stopped rotating on defense, we were a step slow in the fourth quarter and once we got behind the eight ball, they got a lot of momentum and we couldn’t stop them. Diener is a good shooter. He’s definitely capable of doing what he did. When you’ve got guys like him and Mike Dunleavy out there, you can’t leave them open because they can heat up quick.”