Wednesday, October 30th 2013 at 8:00 PM ET at New Orleans Arena
Game Rewind: Pacers 95, Pelicans 90
Scott Agness | October 30, 2013
Back on the court for the second consecutive night to open the season, Paul George scored 19 points in the second half to help the Pacers (2-0) overcome a 14-point halftime deficit and grind out a quality win in New Orleans (0-1), 95-90.
The Pacers’ core remembered a very similar game play out last year. On the end of a back-to-back, things didn’t go well early on and they’d have to dig their way out, point by point, out of a big hole.
Wednesday night at New Orleans Arena, the Pacers missed six of their first eight shots and had five quick turnovers. Roy Hibbert picked up two fouls not two minutes into the contest, which limited him to just one point in five first-half minutes. Foul trouble put the Pelicans in the bonus midway through the quarter. North Central High School product Eric Gordon scored 11 of the Pelicans’ 24 points in the first quarter as they led by 10 after one period.
In the second, the Pacers got to within seven points, but the Pelicans then ran off nine in a row to push their cushion to 16. Indiana’s offense lacked movement, penetration, and failed to get into any kind of flow. Paul George scored eight points in the quarter but the Pacers went into the break down 50-36.
The energy and body language improved for the Pacers after intermission. They scored 10 unanswered points and trimmed New Orleans' lead to four on a long ball from George while the Pelicans missed 12 consecutive field goals over a six minute period. Although the Pacers missed four freebies at the foul line, they outscored the Pelicans by seven in the quarter to get within seven, 66-59.
The final stanza did not disappoint. Hitting on seven of their first eight field goals, the Pacers got off to a hot start. They used a 16-5 run to take their first lead since very early in the game on a triple from Lance Stephenson, who finished16 points and eight rebounds. The lead changed hands three times in the final quarter, with the Pacers ultimately taking it for good on a pair of free throws from David West — part of an 8-0 spurt.
When free throws mattered most, the Pacers converted. They made all 11 attempts in the fourth quarter, which helped them complete the gritty comeback and return to Indianapolis with a 2-0 record.
Inside the Numbers
Paul George was 9-of-19 from the field and scored a game-high 32 points. George Hill had 19 and David West added 12 points, seven rebounds and five assists.
With Roy Hibbert in foul trouble for much of the game, Ian Mahinmi provided seven rebounds and four blocks off the bench.
Eric Gordon finished with 25 points and point guard Jrue Holiday contributed 24 points, seven rebounds and five assists. Anthony Davis recorded a double-double: 20 points and 12 rebounds. His seven offensive boards are a new career high.
The Pacers outscored the Pelicans by 19 in the second half.
Stat of the Game
The Pacers attempted nine more fouls shots than New Orleans and scored eight more points than the Pelicans at the line.
“It was a big win for our team in a back to back. We had to overcome some adversity. This is what our team has to do to win games on the road and take that next step.” – Frank Vogel
“In the second half, we just gritted our teeth and said ‘You know what? We’re just going to get it done.’ We had stops and it came down to the wire, but we just wanted to show road toughness and we played through adversity. Usually you don’t see that until later in the season, but we did it tonight.” – Roy Hibbert on the comeback
“They’ve got unbelievable guards, probably one of the best guard tandems in this league. Their ability to get to the rim is good no matter what defense we were playing. They were still able to attack and get to the basket, and Roy is always there to protect that. Not having him out there just forced Ian [Mahinmi] to step up.” – Paul George on the impact of Hibbert’s foul trouble
- Indiana has won five straight over New Orleans.
- A double technical was handed out to Lance Stephenson and Greg Stiemsma in the second quarter.
- Prior to the game, it was announced that Pelicans forward Ryan Anderson would be out 1-3 weeks after suffering a chip fracture in the second toe of his right foot.
The Pacers return to Indianapolis, where they'll host the Cleveland Cavaliers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Saturday, Nov. 2 at 7 PM EST.