GAME 4 RECAP: Cavs 104, Pacers 100

LeBron James led the way with 32 points and 13 rebounds as the Cavaliers beat the Pacers in Game 4.

Postgame 180422

Scroll Video up Scroll Video down Scroll Video left Scroll Video right

GAME 4 RECAP: Cavs 104, Pacers 100

LeBron James led the way with 32 points and 13 rebounds as the Cavaliers beat the Pacers in Game 4.
Apr 22, 2018  |  00:03

Postgame: Pacers Locker Room - April 22, 2018

April 22, 2018 - Pacer players Lance Stephenson, Darren Collison, and Myles Turner discuss the team's 104-100 loss in game four of their series with the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Apr 23, 2018  |  02:38

Thad Rocks the Rim

April 22, 2018 - Thaddeus Young explodes to the basket for the monster slam.
Apr 22, 2018  |  00:00

Postgame: Victor Oladipo Press Conference - April 22, 2018

April 22, 2018 - Victor Oladipo discusses his shooting troubles and Indy's tough Game 4 loss to Cleveland.
Apr 23, 2018  |  03:14

Postgame: McMillan Press Conference - April 22, 2018

April 22, 2018 - Coach McMillan gives his thoughts on the Pacers' tough Game 4 loss to Cleveland.
Apr 22, 2018  |  07:29

Cory Dimes to Sabonis

April 22, 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - Highlights
Apr 22, 2018  |  03:27

Vic Hits Sabonis For The Slam

April 22, 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - Highlights
Apr 22, 2018  |  03:01

DC Connects Through Contact

April 22, 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - Highlights
Apr 22, 2018  |  02:41

Postgame: Tyronn Lue Press Conference - April 22, 2018

April 22, 2018 - Cleveland coach, Tyronn Lue, talks about pulling out the Game 4 win over Indy.
Apr 22, 2018  |  06:22

Lance Gets It Back

April 22, 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - Highlights
Apr 22, 2018  |  02:15

Vic Spots Up for the Trey

April 22, 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - Highlights
Apr 22, 2018  |  02:00

Turner Beats the Clock

April 22, 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - Highlights
Apr 22, 2018  |  01:33

Oladipo Spins to the Rim

April 22, 2018: Cleveland Cavaliers vs. Indiana Pacers - Highlights
Apr 22, 2018  |  01:08

Colts QB Jacoby Brissett Talks Hoops

April 22, 2018 - Indianapolis Colts quarterback Jacoby Brissett Talks about his love of basketball and the playoff atmosphere at Game 3.
Apr 22, 2018  |  01:08

Oladipo's Aim Untrue, But His Keel is Even

by Mark Montieth
Pacers.com Writer
@MarkMontieth

Fresh out of the shower, Victor Oladipo sat in front of his locker, swaddled in blue towels, watching replays of what had just taken place on the Bankers Life Fieldhouse court.

If what he saw threatens to keep him up at night, it didn't show. He gave no reaction, just a blank stare at the iPad screen, oblivious to all that was going on around him. Later, meeting with reporters in the postgame press conference, his reaction was much the same.

"I was just watching film; that's it," he said following the Pacers' 104-100 loss Sunday in Game 4 of their first-round playoff series with Cleveland. "I've got to watch it again to see what I see."

Pacers Playoffs presented by Bankers Life, Key Bank, Kroger, and Mtn Dew

He'll no doubt see it again, along with his teammates, when they regather for practice on Tuesday. Most likely he'll come under scrutiny for some examples of his shot selection over the final six minutes, when the Pacers spoiled yet another dramatic second-half comeback by letting a three-point lead slip away.

The Pacers, down by 16 in the first half and 10 at halftime, had taken a 92-89 lead on Oladipo's technical foul shot after Lance Stephenson had baited LeBron James into elbowing him and falling to the court after a timeout had been called.

Seemingly on the verge of taking a 3-1 lead in the series, they now are tied 2-2 and face a best-of-three conclusion. Time will tell whether they will regret not driving a stake through a wobbly Cavs team when they had their chance. The series resumes in Cleveland on Wednesday, then returns to The Fieldhouse on Friday. Should a Game 7 be necessary, it will be played next Sunday in Cleveland.

PLAYOFF CENTRAL: Playoff News, Tickets, and More »

Going on the road shouldn't bother Oladipo much, though. He's clearly has been a better player away from The Fieldhouse, his in-game "this is my city" declarations to the contrary.

He averaged 1.6 more points on the road than at home during the regular season, with better shooting percentages across the board. The trend has continued during the playoffs. He scored 32 and 22 points in the first two games in Cleveland by hitting 54 percent of his shots but followed with 18 and 17 points on 29 percent shooting in Games 3 and 4 back home.

He hit just 5-of-20 attempts on his way to 17 points on Sunday, the result of inaccuracy in both his aim and his decision-making. Once that three-point lead had been established, he hit just 2-of-5 shots down the stretch, including a fortunate connection on a desperation 3-pointer with 11.9 seconds left when the Pacers trailed by six points.


Victor Oladipo

That followed a third quarter in which he missed all five shots, which tapped the brakes on a Pacers' surge that trimmed their 10-point halftime deficit to two heading into the fourth quarter.

Some of Oladipo's shots came too early in the shot clock. He was hardly the only Pacers player guilty of poor execution in the halfcourt offense — Lance Stephenson was notably rushing in the first half — but as the team's only All-Star and leading scorer, Oladipo bears the greatest burden in tight games, where he generally has excelled this season.

Coach Nate McMillan described his team's offense as "frantic" and referred to "some heroic shots that were taken throughout the game." Asked about Oladipo's shot selection, he spread the blame.

"We took some quick shots," he said. "We just didn't play the game the right way, and it wasn't just Victor. I thought we as a unit played the game like that."

The Pacers also took shots that were too late, forced flings to beat the 24-second shot clock buzzer, but lack of patience was their greatest obstacle throughout the game.

"We settled," said Darren Collison, who hit just 5-of-14 field goals but had eight assists without a turnover.

"We probably could have gotten better shots, but when you're in the game guys are trying to make plays. That's a big part of winning games, the last five minutes."

"We didn't execute our offense to its entirety," added Thaddeus Young, who grabbed a game-high 16 rebounds. "We did settle for some quick ones."


Victor Oladipo

Oladipo didn't agree. Not publicly, at least.

"I thought we got some pretty good looks," he said. "For the most part I thought they were decent."

That contradiction shouldn't be taken too literally. Oladipo's postgame mantra is to never offer a negative thought, or even acknowledge a negative topic. His responses, after wins and losses, after good performances and bad, are always something along the lines of "I've got to watch the film and get better," as he said on Sunday.

Some players agonize after performances such as Oladipo had on Sunday. Other are able to forget quickly and move on.

Oladipo?

"I'm a person that learns," he said. "Whatever you want to define that as, that's what I am. I learn from it. I'll make sure I'm better next game.

"Obviously it's a tough loss and it doesn't feel good. But at the end of the day it's a series and you have to be even-keeled."

He's been that all season. And he has this bit of (for him) good news awaiting him: the next game is on the road.


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

Mark Montieth's book, "Reborn: The Pacers and the Return of Pro Basketball to Indianapolis," covers the formation and early seasons of the franchise. It is available at retail outlets throughout Indiana and online at sources such as Amazon and Barnes & Noble.

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.

NEXT UP:

  • Facebook
  • Twitter