Saturday, December 22nd at 8:00 PM EST at New Orleans Arena
Game Rewind: IND 81, NOH 75
by Scott Agness | December 21, 2012
It was a tale of two halves for Indiana in New Orleans. There were setbacks early—like flying on game day because of poor weather conditions—and they came out flat, but they wouldn't just roll over. Down by as many as 22, the Pacers (16-12) outscored the Hornets (5-22) 52-29 in the second half for their third-straight win, 81-75.
The Pacers would prefer to forget about the first half in New Orleans. They scored just 11 points in the opening period—their second-lowest output in a quarter all season—and had seven turnovers. Meanwhile, Hornets center Robin Lopez shined, scoring seven points in a row in the second and had four blocks by halftime.
There was a sequence of four straight shots which exhibited exactly how things went for the Pacers in the opening half. Paul George was blocked, David West was blocked, and then Lance Stephenson missed everything on two straight shots. Still, even with the way they played (shooting 32 percent and turning it over 11 times), they were only down 17 with another half to go.
Indiana came out on a mission in the third quarter. Once down 22 in the first half, they scored 17 unanswered points and outscored the Hornets 24-7 in the period to tie the game at 53 heading into the final 12 minutes. In the third, the Pacers' defense held the Hornets scoreless over a six-minute period and to just 3-of-17 shooting.
In the fourth, George Hill buried a three-pointer from the right arc to give the Pacers their first lead, 60-59. The Pacers later found themselves down by five after the Hornets went on a 9-2 run. The Pacers returned the favor with 10 straight to give them a five-point edge, 75-70.
With under a minute to play and the Hornets down four, Anthony Davis drove the right baseline and laid it in through traffic. Out of a timeout, the Pacers gave it to West who connected on a fadeaway jumper over Davis.
West scored 20 of his game-high 25 points in the second half.
Two New Orleans shots didn't fall and Paul George slammed the door shut with two free throws. The Pacers truly fought for this game and won, 81-75.
Inside the Numbers
The Pacers’ catalyst in the second half was David West, who finished with 25 points and seven rebounds. He has now scored in double figures in 19-straight games and all but one game this season.
Paul George recorded a double-double (17 points and 12 rebounds) and George Hill added 12 points and six assists.
Robin Lopez posted a season-high 24 points, 11 rebounds and six blocks (tying a career-high) to lead the Hornets. Greivis Vasquez had 14 points and eight dimes. In his first game against the Pacers, Anthony Davis registered 10 points and nine rebounds.
The Pacers recorded 11 turnovers in the first half but just three in the second.
The Pacers left seven points at the charity stripe, shooting 11-for-18 (61.1 percent).
Stat of the Game
For the second-straight game, the third quarter is the difference. The Pacers scored 24 points and held the Hornets to just seven, on 3-of-17 shooting.
“We just came in and said that teams lose 17-point leads in the first half of games all the time. It happens every week in the NBA, and it usually happens when the better team record wise is the team that is down. This was a ‘believe’ moment.” – Frank Vogel on the second half
“When you defend like we defend, you’re definitely never out of the game. We’re capable of having quarters like we did tonight where you’re holding teams to seven points in the quarter. When you can do that, you can make up huge deficits.” -Frank Vogel on their third quarter
“He really took over the game, (made) un-guardable shots. It was reminiscent of Dirk Nowitzki, with his fade-away (at the end of the game). He had great length on it. He really just willed us, willed our team to a win. I’m very happy with this one.” – Frank Vogel on David West
“As a group, we felt that we had to get our legs back. We came out struggling in that first half. I thought the team did a good job of just gaining our composure and getting a little bit more focused defensively. Offensively, we started making some shots.” – David West on the comeback
- The Pacers have swept the season series with the Hornets and have won the last four meetings.
- The Pacers have now won 17 of their last 22 games, and improve to 4-1 on Saturday games.
- Gerald Green missed his first game of the season with a sprained left ankle.
- New Orleans honored David West during a timeout for scoring his 10,000th career-point.
- Indianapolis native Eric Gordon returned to New Orleans after rehabbing his knee in Los Angeles. He’s yet to play this season, but has now been cleared for full contact.
The Pacers next game is at home against their Central Division rival, the Chicago Bulls. The game is on Wednesday, December 26 at 7:00 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Buy Tickets »