GAME RECAP: Pacers 106, Blazers 100

Domantas Sabonis records a double-double (20 points, 11 rebounds) as the Pacers hold off the Blazers at home.

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GAME RECAP: Pacers 106, Blazers 100

Domantas Sabonis records a double-double (20 points, 11 rebounds) as the Pacers hold off the Blazers at home.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:02

Postgame: Pacers Locker Room - Feb. 27, 2020

February 27, 2020 - Pacers players Victor Oladipo, Justin Holiday and Myles Turner discussed Indiana's 106-100 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Thursday night at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Feb 27, 2020  |  03:56

Turner Nails Clutch Three

Myles Turner sets up at the top of the key and nails the clutch three pointer to seal the victory for the Pacers.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:12

Pacers Go To Work On Offensive Glass

The Pacers refuse to give up on the play, leading to three field goal attempts on one possession.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:15

Justin Drains Three For The Lead

Malcolm Brogdon finds Justin Holiday for the three pointer to give Indy the lead late in the third quarter.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:10

Turner Swats It Out Of Bounds

Myles Turner protects the paint and swats the opponent's shot out of play.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:07

Oladipo Hits Pull-up Three

Victor Oladipo trails in transition and knocks down the three pointer off of the pass from Malcolm Brogdon.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:10

Victor Finishes In Transition

Domantas Sabonis creates the turnover, leading to a transition layup for Victor Oladipo.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:10

Turner Hits Wild Corner Three

With the shot clock expiring, Myles Turner puts up the heavily contested sideline three pointer and gets it to drop.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:11

Oladipo Drops The Floater

Victor Oladipo goes coast to coast and makes the floater.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:09

Justin Nails Stepback Trey

Justin Holiday creates spaces with a nice stepback move before knocking down the three pointer.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:10

Oladipo Dimes to Domas Underneath

Victor Oladipo gets inside and drops a sweet pass to Domantas Sabonis for the basket.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:12

Warren Gets Steal & Slam

T.J. Warren gets the steal on the defensive end, leading to an easy flush on the break.
Feb 27, 2020  |  00:07

Caffeinated Turner Good to the Last Drop

by Mark Montieth Writer

The difference in Myles Turner's demeanor has been noticeable lately. He's jazzed up, playing with more energy, more confidence.

You can see it in the way he pressures defenders on the perimeter, attacks the rim for follow-up dunks, and runs the court. You can see it in the box score, too. Two nights ago, it was his career-high eight blocked shots and 10 rebounds in the victory over Charlotte. Thursday, it was his 10 rebounds — five at the offensive end — and two blocked shots in a 106-100 victory over Portland at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

What brought this about? A heartfelt conversation with a friend or family member? Prodding from a coach? Encouragement from a teammate?

"Coffee," Turner said.

Yeah, coffee. And not decaf, either. Turner has been drinking it before games off and on throughout his career, but recently discovered it had a greater impact if he did so about an hour before tipoff. When he drank it shortly before taking the floor for warmups, he tended to crash around halftime and lose some of his energy.

This time he was perky in the fourth quarter as in the first, especially after he drained a 3-pointer on a kickout pass from Domantas Sabonis for the game-clinching points with 9.1 seconds left. The Blazers called timeout and Turner celebrated by shouting and swinging his fist through the air. Goga Bitadze ran off the bench to bump him, followed quickly by a couple of bumps and shouts from Sabonis.

"I just know when I play that way, it normally bodes better for myself and the team — just bringing energy and being somebody the team can look to to find that energy," said Turner, who finished with 11 points. "I know when I play with high intensity it does something to our team.

"Shoutout to coffee," he added.

Myles Turner, Goga Bitadze

Photo Credit: Matt Kryger

Shoutout to teamwork and balance, too. Six Pacers scored in double figures and a few others made important contributions to hold off the Trail Blazers, who played without the injured guard Damian Lillard, who had scored 50 points in Portland's victory over the Pacers on Jan. 26.

Sabonis, limited to 8 1/2 first-half minutes with three fouls — one of them an offensive foul that appeared highly questionable despite it being held up by a review — led the Pacers with 20 points and 11 rebounds and one very big assists. Malcolm Brogdon shot poorly (7-of-20) but hit two big shots in the final 5:13. T.J. Warren added 15, seven in the first quarter when the Pacers jumped to a 30-24 lead.

Victor Oladipo added 15 as well, 12 of them in a third-quarter flurry that propelled the Pacers to a 37-point third quarter. From the 10:05 mark to 5:49, Oladipo raced up and down the court with abandon. He drew two fouls that resulted in three foul shots, scored on three layups and hit a 3-pointer in transition.

Justin Holiday, filling in effectively for Jeremy Lamb at shooting guard for the second straight game, added 11 points while hitting all three of his three-point shots.

Despite all those contributions, the Pacers threatened to let this one slip away. They led by 14 points midway through the fourth quarter and still by 10 with 1:54 remaining on Brogdon's mid-range shot shortly after Oladipo, Warren and Oladipo again committed three consecutive turnovers.

Three consecutive misses got Portland back into the game, however. CJ McCollum's layup reduced the Pacers' lead to three with 29.1 seconds left, giving the Blazers a chance to force overtime if they could get a defensive stop. Nate McMillan called for a pick-and-roll with Sabonis and Brogdon on the left wing, but when Sabonis took the pass in the lane he ran into Hassan Whiteside and was doubled by Carmelo Anthony. He flung a left-handed pass out front to Turner, who hit a 28-footer to end the drama.

"I talk to Domas about it all the time," Turner said. "He garners so much attention, whenever he makes his move more than likely someone is going to double or help down. He made a great read and the shot went through."

And so a month that began with a six-game losing streak that threatened to ruin the Pacers' hopes of achieving a top-four finish in the Eastern Conference can end with five wins in the month's final six games if they win at Cleveland on Saturday. They are just 1 1/2 games back of Miami and Philadelphia for the fourth-place spot that would bring homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

"If you don't get excited about the end of the year coming and where we can be in the playoffs...I don't think it's going to take much for us to be ready," Holiday said.

The Heat and 76ers are cooperating, too. Miami has lost its previous two games and seven of its past 10. Philadelphia has lost its previous seven road games and is temporarily without stars Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons as it heads out on a four-game Western Conference road trip.

"Now's our time to respond and take advantage," Brogdon said.

Have a question for Mark? Want it to be on Email him at and you could be featured in his next mailbag.

Mark Montieth's book on the formation and groundbreaking seasons of the Pacers, "Reborn: The Pacers and the Return of Pro Basketball to Indianapolis," is available in bookstores throughout Indiana and on

Note: The contents of this page have not been reviewed or endorsed by the Indiana Pacers. All opinions expressed by Mark Montieth are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of the Indiana Pacers, their partners, or sponsors.

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