Wednesday, November 20th, 2013 at 7:00 PM ET at Madison Square Garden
Game Rewind: Pacers 103, Knicks 96
Scott Agness | November 20, 2013 - Updated: 11:36 PM
The Pacers looked to rebound from their first loss of the season, playing on the big stage at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday night. They fell behind 13 very early and struggled to shoot the ball for most of the game. Their defense came up big down the stretch and Paul George took the game over, leading the Pacers (10-1) to a 103-96 overtime win against the New York Knicks (3-8).
On the road for two straight games, the Pacers were sure glad they packed their defense, though it didn’t appear that way initially. With the league taking notice of their hot start, it’s even more imperative for them to bring it night after night because opponents are going to raise their game in hopes of stealing a win. For this one, ESPN was even in the building to televise the game around the nation.
The Knicks, who've now dropped four consecutive games, competed from the tip. The Pacers got off to a less-than-ideal start, dropping behind 13-0 as they missed their first seven shots and had two turnovers. Despite a poor first period, going 5-of-20 from the floor, the Pacers trailed by just five heading in to the second quarter. At the end of the first quarter, Roy Hibbert threw up a 3-pointer from 27-feet and it banked in for just the fifth triple of his career.
George didn't score for more than 12 minutes, but he then tallied five straight to draw the Pacers within one, 24-23. Carmelo Anthony, who had 17 points in the first half, later scored eight in a row. The Knicks led from the outset and had a 43-37 advantage at intermission.
Early in the second half, the Pacers went on a 7-0 run take their first lead at 48-47, but then the Knicks went on a 10-3 run – much of it with Anthony on the bench with four fouls. The Pacers, who shot just 26 percent in the third, didn't take advantage of the time Anthony was on the bench and trailed by four as the quarter concluded.
Late in the fourth with the Knicks went up six, the Pacers got running. They scored eight straight, including back-to-back 3s from point guards George Hill and C.J. Watson to trim their deficit to one.
The Pacers could’ve put the game away if not for struggles at the foul line. At one point, Hill missed three in a row. They missed eight as a team in the second half after going 7-for-7 in the first two quarters.
After multiple stops on the defensive end late in the fourth quarter, Hill missed two open 3s in a row, which forced the Pacers to foul Anthony with 9.3 seconds left. He made them both, the Knicks took an 89-86 lead, and the Pacers called a timeout before giving it one last push.
Out of the timeout, the play was called for Paul George and he was fouled by Iman Shumpert in the act of shooting an outside trey. George came up clutch at the line, sinking all three with 5.2 seconds left. Anthony, going against PG at the other end, couldn’t get his 11-foot fadeaway to fall, sending it to overtime—the first of the season for both teams.
Overtime is where George took over for good. He wasn't leaving the Garden in defeat. He scored the first seven of extra time, and 13 of 14 in a row going back to the end of regulation. After a troubling start and a shaky offensive performance, shooting just 38 percent in the game, the Pacers improved to 10-1 with the 103-96 overtime win.
Inside the Numbers
Playing 49 minutes, Paul George led all scorers with 35 points, a new season-high—28 coming in the second half and nine in overtime alone. George Hill also recorded a new season-high: 23 points while pulling down eight rebounds. David West registered his second double-double of the year with 10 points and 10 rebounds.
C.J. Watson chipped in seven points on just 1-of-6 shooting, but his third point of the night put him over 3,000 for his career.
Carmelo Anthony paced the Knicks with 30 points (10-for-10 at the line) and 18 rebounds for his fifth double-double of the season. J.R. Smith contributed 21 points off the bench. Beno Udrih, starting for the injured Raymond Felton, entered the game averaging 1.6 points per game and he finished with a season-high 19 on 8-of-15 shooting.
Without Tyson Chandler available, the Knicks were +3 on the boards and outscored the Pacers by four in the paint, 36-32.
The Pacers are now 7-1 when trailing at the half.
“Sometimes when we’re at our best, the offense wasn’t really flowing but our defense buckled down. Proud to get a “W”. ... We might not see a team as desperate as we saw tonight all year. They played a great basketball game. They got after it, they really guarded it, they defended, they played really hard, they got loose balls and we were still able to prevail.” – Frank Vogel
“Paul George obviously was sensational, not just carrying the offensive load. To carry the offense load the way he did and have to guard Carmelo Anthony for basically 48 minutes, I don’t know where he finds the energy, but it’s special. Even as he has become our go-to guy, he’s still very new at crunch time moments for us and he showed another step, to be able to make big plays at crunch time. Last minute, two minutes of the game, he knocked out three big free throws even after being iced on a time out. That guy’s got big guts.” – Vogel on Paul George
“That’s the Pacers. To sum it all up and what we do and what our identity is – everybody contributes and that was the case tonight.”– Paul George on the end of the game
“He’s one of the best in the league and I don’t say that just because he’s my teammate. It’s just the way he plays on both ends of the floor. He wants to match up with the best player on the other team. To have that player on your team makes things a lot easier. I’m loving the way he’s turned into the player that he is and will I will continue to cheer him on.” – George Hill on Paul George
Stat of the Game
The Pacers attempted more than double the number of free throws than that of the Knicks, going 28-for-36. The Knicks were 14-of-17.
- With the win, they ended a streak of three consecutive regular-season losses to the Knicks.
- Lance Stephenson received a technical foul in the third quarter.
- The Knicks were without Raymond Felton (pinched nerve), Amar’e Stoudemire (knee), and Tyson Chandler (right leg).
- Pacers executive Donnie Walsh’s high school, Fordham Prep, named their basketball court after him at a dedication ceremony Tuesday night.
Friday, Nov. 22 at Boston – 7:30 p.m. EST