Friday, February 7, 2014 at 7:00 PM ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse
Game Rewind: Pacers 118, Trail Blazers 113 (OT)
Pacers.com Staff | February 7, 2014
The Pacers played host to the Portland Trail Blazers Friday night at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in a much-anticipated showdown, which was seen by a nationally televised audience.
The inter-conference matchup lived up to the billing and the Pacers (39-10) prevailed, 118-113, but it took an extra session to do it. George Hill carried the team, with David West as his wingman. Hill scored a career-high 37 points, with 14 of those coming in the fourth quarter and overtime period.
With the win the Pacers improved to 39-10, including a 24-2 mark on their home court, and coach Frank Vogel recorded his 150th career win.
Portland (35-15) led from the beginning, even knocking down some incredible shots, but Indiana did just enough to hang around. They used a 14-5 run late in the fourth quarter, capped off by a David West rebound layup to take their first lead, 95-94. The lead traded hands often as the teams went shot-for-shot. The Pacers kept attacking the Blazers at the top of the key, and particularly Lillard.
With 8.3 seconds left in regulation and trailing by three, Roy Hibbert rebounded a Paul George miss and kicked it out to Hill for the triple. Stout defense by the Pacers forced Blazers forward Nicolas Batum into a tough 21-foot jumper, which was off the mark.
After losing the tip in overtime and giving up a layup to Batum, the Pacers scored 10 of the next 12 points for a 113-107 lead with 60 seconds remaining. Damian Lillard, who scored a game-high 38 points, then sank a 3-pointer. George, who was just 5-for-23 on the night, answered with a jumper at the elbow to stretch the Pacers’ lead to five.
An obvious improvement in the second half for the Pacers was their effort on the offensive glass. With zero first-half offensive boards, that was a big point of emphasis in the second half. It’s only fitting that some of their biggest buckets, 17 points in total, came with another opportunity.
Even though both George and Hibbert had poor nights on the offensive end, and the Pacers were without Lance Stephenson for the second time this season, other guys stepped up. Hill did all he could and helped provide the energy they needed.
The Pacers added another tally to the win column for the fourth game in a row, and now have a 15-game lead on Chicago in the division. They’re taking Saturday off, and then play three more games before the All-Star break, which begins on Thursday.
Inside the Numbers
George Hill sank a career-high 12 shots, including 11-of-12 at the foul line, on the way to scoring a career-high 37 points. He also grabbed a season-high nine boards and dished out eight assists. The Pacers are 4-0 this season when Hill contributes at least 20.
David West recorded his sixth double-double of the year, with a season-high 30 points and 10 rebounds. Rasual Butler was the third Pacers player to record a season-high in points, with 10 on 3-of-4 shooting.
Damian Lillard led all scorers with 38 points, three shy of his career-high. Robin Lopez posted his 17th double-double with 17 & 14, and LaMarcus Aldridge added 22 before fouling out.
In the paint, the Pacers outscored the Trail Blazers, the lowest scoring paint team, 40-24 and by 13 at the foul line, as they hit 29-of-35 attempts.
Indiana scored a season-high 118 points and improved to 16-2 scoring when topping the century mark.
Portland’s 104 field goal attempts is a season-high for an Indiana opponent.
“You could just see the look in David West’s eyes all night. He just put the whole team on his back. … His will just carried us to the victory.” – Frank Vogel
“George Hill’s a special player. He’s probably are most underrated guy, although David West could argue that as well. Just to see him have a breakout game like that with Lance [Stephenson] out, and knowing he would have to pick up some of the offensive load was good to see.” – Frank Vogel
“Just a determined zone. When things weren’t going well, I just tried to do whatever it takes to help this team win a basketball game.” – George Hill
“He was just assertive. … I thought he was just taking things upon himself and making plays at the basket and attacking when their defense wasn’t setup.” – Paul George on George Hill
“D-West orchestrated a lot of the plays. Coach let him do that. I don’t think in the overtime or 4th quarter that coach called any plays. We were playing, and trying to attack [Damian] Lillard.” – Roy Hibbert
“It was imperative that we came out of this game feeling good about how we played and feeling good about our group, particularly matched up against a tough, tough Western Conference team.” – David West
“(Portland) doesn’t run so it was huge for us to crash the basket. We felt like we were able to get back in the game because they don’t run. That was a big point coach made at halftime.” – Paul George on second-chance opportunities late
Stat of the Game
The Pacers scored 17 points off 11 offensive rebounds in the second half and overtime, after zero offensive boards in the first two stanzas.
- Indiana has won the last four meetings against Portland in Indy.
- Pacers newcomer Andrew Bynum joined the team on Friday and sat on the bench in street clothes.
- Recording another sellout (18,165), the Pacers played in front of full capacity crowd for the 16th time this season.
- Colts head coach Chuck Pagano and his wife, Tina, were courtside in Frank Vogel’s seats. Colts wide-out Reggie Wayne and former player David Thornton were also in attendance.
Sunday, Feb. 9 at Orlando – 6 p.m. EST