Friday, April 12, 2013 at 7:00 PM EDT at Bankers Life Fieldhouse
Game Rewind: IND 109, BKN 117
Pacers.com Staff Report | April 12, 2013 | Updated at 9:32 PM
We’ve seen this before. Get down big and challenge late.
It was the fourth consecutive game that the Pacers had fallen behind by at least 20 points. Unlike Tuesday, they were unsuccessful in completing the comeback. The Pacers (49-30) locked down on defense and rallied in the second half to take their first lead, 101-99, with five minutes to go. Brooklyn converted down the stretch and captured their fourth straight win, 117-109. The Nets (47-32) swept the season series, 3-0.
Indiana’s defense, which has allowed opponents to make at least half their shots in three of the past four games, didn’t do much to slow Brooklyn down in the opening half. The Nets got off to a nearly perfect start – hitting on seven of their first eight shots – and went ahead 18-10. Brook Lopez connected on his first six shots and tallied 14 by quarter’s end. Brooklyn connected on 71 percent of its shots and led by seven after 12 minutes.
Nets guard Deron Williams picked up where Lopez left off in the second period. He drilled 7-of-12 shots, including 4-of-7 tries from 3-point range, for 25 first half points – 20 coming in the second stanza. Fueled by Williams, the Nets went on a 20-6 spurt and led by as many as 21. At the break, the Pacers trailed 69-50; Brooklyn’s 69 first half points are a season-high for them, as well as the most points the Pacers have given up in any half this season.
The game intensified in the third quarter. Reggie Evans was given two separate technical fouls and thus ejected from the contest. Keith Bogans fouled Lance Stephenson hard and despite Stephenson walking away from the situation, both received technical fouls.
After getting behind 76-52, Frank Vogel made a couple of moves that worked well. Defensively, he moved Paul George onto Deron Williams, who had 30 with about 10 minutes left in the third but didn’t hit another shot (0-for-7) and had just three free-throws with the game already in hand. On the offensive end they got back to running, led by Stephenson, and scored 11 fast break points. The Pacers outscored the Nets 35-23 in the third – the same margin for the Nets in the second quarter – to cut their deficit to seven, 92-85, entering the final quarter.
Stephenson brought fans to their feet as he knocked down an outside shot from the top of the key to give the Pacers their first lead of the game, 101-99. That was short-lived, however. After the game was knotted at 104, the Nets scored 13 of the game’s final 18 points and held on for the win. The Pacers got nothing in six of their final seven possessions of the game.
With three games remaining – two on the road – the urgency is definitely felt, but they need to play like it. They’ll likely have to win two of those games to secure the third seed.
Inside the Numbers
All five Indiana starters finished in double figures for the 12th time this season and David West led the way with 26 points. Paul George added 21 (14 in the second half) and Lance Stephenson scored 13.
With 17 points and 10 assists, George Hill recorded his second double-double of the season. In his 36 minutes on the floor, playing with a strained groin, Hill didn’t have a turnover.
Deron Williams scored 25 of his game-high 33 points in the first half. His 14 assists tied his season-high. Joe Johnson and Brook Lopez each finished with 24 points and Reggie Evans pulled down 12 rebounds before being tossed in the third quarter.
The Pacers were outrebounded by four but they scored more than half of their points, 58, in the paint.
Free-throws were dead even. Both teams were 21-of-26.
In their last 11 games finishing in triple digits, the Nets are 10-1; they are now 10-0 this season when scoring at least 112 points.
“Clearly we’ve got to start games with a bigger sense of urgency. To win in the playoffs you’ve got to play with that sense of urgency that we had in the fourth quarter for four quarters, and we didn’t do that tonight.” – Frank Vogel
“We weren’t able to complete the task, but a lot of it is when you spot them a 20-point lead, you’re just fighting up hill the entire game.” – David West
“We’re not showing the ability to play complete games. At this time of year, we should be gearing up, focusing on tweaks that we’re going to make as the year comes to a close. We just haven’t been able to rely on our defense as we were able to in the early goings of the season.” – David West
“We have to turn around our approach in starting games off. We have to make teams uncomfortable. That’s our style of basketball and we’re not doing it.” – Paul George
“Numbers don’t lie. We’re all professionals here. It starts with me. I’ve got to come out with better energy and defend a lot better than how I’ve been defending.” – George Hill on slow starts
“All of us are fighters. When our backs are against the wall, we come out swinging. [Maybe] from the start of the game we should put negative 20 on the board so we start with that urgency.” – George Hill on getting behind in games
Stat of the Game
Brooklyn made 51 percent of their attempts, the sixth Indiana opponent this season to finish 50 percent or better. The Pacers are 0-6 in those games.
- Kris Humphries, Reggie Evans (two), Keith Bogans and Lance Stephenson were all given technical fouls.
- Nets forward Gerald Wallace (lower left leg contusion) was inactive.
- The Pacers wore their gold uniforms.
- The game was sold-out, the Pacers’ ninth sellout of the season. IndyCar drivers James Hinchcliffe, Josef Newgarden and Conor Daly were in attendance.
The Pacers are on the road for their next two games, beginning in New York on Sunday at 3:30 PM EST.