Aaron Nesmith

Game Rewind: Pacers 106, 76ers 120

Monday, Oct. 24 at 7:00 PM ET at Wells Fargo Center

Game Recap

Playing on the road for the first time this season, the Pacers ran into a talented and hungry team. Philadelphia has championship aspirations, but the Sixers got off to a disappointing start to the season, dropping their first three contests.

Unfortunately for Indiana, the Sixers (1-3) righted the ship on Monday night at home, jumping out to an 18-point halftime lead and thwarting an attempted rally by the Pacers (1-3) in the fourth quarter. Philadelphia ultimately pulled away for a 120-106 victory.

Tyrese Haliburton led four Pacers in double figures in the loss, registering his third double-double of the season with 19 points and 10 assists. He went 7-for-11 from the field and 3-for-6 from 3-point range while also pulling down six rebounds.

"We’re getting valuable experience for our younger players," Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle said after the game. "This environment was the complete opposite of having our first three games at home...This was as tough of an environment as it gets. We did some good things considering (that) with our young guys."

For the first time this season, the Pacers led in the first quarter, jumping out to an early 9-5 advantage. The two teams traded the lead nine times over the first seven-plus minutes on Monday.

But Indiana went cold midway through the frame, going without a field goal for over four minutes as the Sixers reeled off a 15-2 run. Chris Duarte's putback basket with 1:24 remaining in the quarter ended the Pacers' drought, but the damage was done, as Philadelphia took a 33-23 lead into second quarter.

The hosts continued to build on their lead in the ensuing frame, opening it with a 15-6 run. The Pacers, meanwhile, couldn't buy a shot from the outside, missing 12 consecutive 3-pointers between Buddy Hield's trey with 5:55 remaining in the first quarter and Hield's second three at 5:12 in the second quarter.

That triggered a mini-run for the Blue & Gold, as Jalen Smith scored on the next three Pacers possessions, converting a layup, an old-fashioned three-point play, and then a corner three to cap an 11-3 spurt.

But Philadelphia responded with six straight and kept the margin well above double digits entering the intermission, taking a 64-46 lead into the break.

The Sixers led 71-51 early in the third quarter before the Pacers finally strung together some threes. Haliburton knocked down two treys and Hield added another during an 11-2 run that cut the deficit to 11.

Hield's layup at 5:29 made it 76-66, but that would be the closest Indiana would get in the frame. Haliburton did his best to keep the Pacers in the game, tallying 13 points in the quarter, but Philadelphia still took a 90-76 lead into the fourth.

Tyrese Maxey knocked down a 3-pointer for the Sixers on the opening possession of the final frame, but the Pacers quickly answered. T.J. McConnell drove and found Andrew Nembhard for an open three, then stole the ensuing inbounds pass and dished to a cutting Bennedict Mathurin for a three-point play.

The Blue & Gold continued to whittle away at the lead from there, with Mathurin's trey at 8:12 finally getting them back within single digits at 99-90 and forcing a timeout from Sixers head coach Doc Rivers.

The Pacers twice cut it to eight -- first on an and-one reverse layup by Mathurin at 7:33 and again on a lob from Mathurin to Isaiah Jackson at 6:27.

But back-to-back triples from James Harden -- the latter after he stepped on Mathurin's foot -- pushed Philadelphia's lead back to 109-95 with 5:21 to play. The hosts pushed the margin as high as 20 over the closing minutes.

Hield tallied 18 points, six rebounds, and six assists in the loss. Mathurin scored 15 of his 17 points in the second half, while Smith tallied all 17 of his points before halftime.

"My shots weren't falling and the second half, I felt like I came out with a different energy, a different attitude," Mathurin said after the game. "And my shots were going in."

Harden narrowly missed out on a triple-double for Philadelphia, finishing with 29 points on 10-of-18 shooting (5-of-10 from 3-point range), nine rebounds, and 11 assists. Joel Embiid added 26 points and Tobias Harris chipped in 18 points and eight rebounds.

The Pacers continue a five-game road trip in Chicago on Wednesday. They will then visit Washington on Friday before closing the trip with a pair of games in Brooklyn.

Inside the Numbers

Mathurin went 0-for-7 from the field and 0-for-4 from 3-point range in the first half, but was 6-for-9 from the field over the final two quarters. He scored 11 in the fourth quarter.

Smith recorded his second double-double in a row, finishing with 17 points and 10 rebounds.

Haliburton has now registered three consecutive double-doubles. He had just four points on 1-of-3 shooting at halftime before scoring 15 on 6-of-8 shooting the rest of the way.

The Pacers outscored Indiana 50-26 in points in the paint and 24-7 in fastbreak points.

Aaron Nesmith and Duarte finished with nine points apiece, each matching their season highs.

You Can Quote Me On That

“In the second half, (Mathurin) settled in offensively, and he’s doing some nice things defensively, but he’s showing some positive signs." -Carlisle on Mathurin

"With McConnell and Nembhard, we have two guys who can pressure the ball. Benn was aggressive during that period…We made some good things happen. We were able to get the leverage in our favor. It resulted in a run, and we would have really been able to put pressure on them had we (hit) that three in (the fourth quarter)." -Carlisle on the Pacers' fourth-quarter rally

"We've got a lot of fight. Even though we were missing a lot of shots -- shots weren't falling for us tonight, their shots were falling -- we know how to come together as a team." -Jackson on Indiana continuing to mount fourth-quarter rallies

"One of the best scorers ever to play the game...He causes a lot of different (issues) and when you pair him with a guy like Joel and it's a lot to game plan for. BuI thought we did an okay job, but he just made some shots. That's what he does." -Haliburton on slowing down Harden

"He was able to draw fouls. I feel like that was one of the main things he was doing the whole game. It was putting me in a bad position where I couldn't play as aggressive...kudos to him." -Jackson on the challenge of guarding Embiid

Stat of the Night

Philadelphia had considerably more success than Indiana from 3-point range on Monday. The Sixers outscored the Pacers by 21 from beyond the arc, going 19-for-43 (44.2 percent) while Indiana was just 12-for-44 (27.3 percent) overall and 4-for-20 in the first half.

  • The Pacers have dropped six straight road games at Philadelphia. Their last win at the Wells Fargo Center came on Dec. 14, 2018.
  • Indiana will visit Philadelphia again on Jan. 4 before hosting the Sixers on March 6 and March 18.
  • Pacers big men Myles Turner (sprained left ankle) and Daniel Theis (sore right knee) were inactive for the fourth straight game to start the season.
Up Next

The Pacers travel to Chicago to take on DeMar DeRozan, Zach LaVine, and the Bulls on Wednesday, Oct. 26 at 8:00 PM ET.


After a five-game road trip, the Pacers will return to Gainbridge Fieldhouse to host Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat on Friday, Nov. 4 at 7:00 PM ET. Find Tickets >>