After the 76ers narrowed the Pacers' lead to just two points in the third quarter at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indiana used a dominant fourth quarter to close the door on the Sixers, beating Philly 91-75 and snapping the Pacers' two-game slide.
While Indiana's offense never quite kicked into its highest gear, the defense remained stout all evening, holding the Sixers to 20 points or less in every quarter of the game.
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The Pacers held Philadelphia to just 39 percent shooting, and only put the Sixers on the free throw line 14 times.
In the fourth quarter, while leading by 11, Paul George hit Monta Ellis in stride on an outlet pass, who deftly executed a scoop layup to push Indiana's lead to 13 with four minutes remaining, triggering a timeout from Sixers head coach Brett Brown.
On the other end, Myles Turner stuffed a Sixers layup attempt — one of his three rejections of the night.
The Sixers' 75 points were the fewest a Pacers opponent has scored all season, highlighting the defensive clinic Indiana was able to put on the 9-62 Sixers. With the prospect of leaving a team with nothing to lose hanging around, the Pacers showed tenacity in the fourth, outscoring the Sixers 14-9 in the final six minutes to secure the double-digit victory.
In the first half, Indiana used 11-2 runs in both the first and second quarters to build a 47-36 lead going into the locker room.
But in the third, the Sixers came out hot, streaking out to a quick 7-0 run and winnowing their deficit to as little as two points when the Pacers led 55-53.
However, thanks to a buzzer-beating 3-pointer to close out the third quarter from Ty Lawson — who scored his first points as a member of the Pacers — Indiana took a 10-point lead into the game's final quarter. Lawson played his first minutes since injuring his foot in his debut against the Spurs on March 7, and looked like a fit with the Pacers' reserve unit. The mid-season acquisition scored six points, both on 3-pointers, passed out two assists and collected two rebounds.
"I felt good, just trying to get my wind back," Lawson said. "I felt comfortable. I was just eager to get out there, man. I spent a long time waiting to get out there and play. It felt good."
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It was arguably the Pacers' most balanced scoring effort in a win this season, with no Indiana player scoring more than 15 points, yet all five starters reaching double-figures. The Pacers shot well from beyond the arc, sinking 10-of-26 shots, and limited themselves to just 12 turnovers against the high-energy Sixers.
Things might have got a little too close for comfort in the third quarter against a team that came into the game 9-61, but a strong effort in the fourth quarter — and the team's best defensive performance of the season — ensured Monday night's game wouldn't be a let-down for Indiana, as the Pacers snapped their two-game losing streak at The Fieldhouse.
"It felt like our energy was there. Just at some moments throughout the game it went away," Paul George explained after the game. "As far as being up for it, I felt we were coming off a couple losses at home and this was a must-win."
Inside the Numbers
The Pacers have held 10 of their last 11 opponents under 50 percent from the field.
Indiana had double-digit made 3-pointers for the second time since February 6.
Every Pacers starter scored in double-digits, but no reserve player scored 10 or more.
The Pacers outscored the Sixers on the fast break 10-2. Each team scored 36 in the paint.
Ian Mahinmi recorded his eighth double-double of the season with 12 points and 10 rebounds.
You Can Quote Me On That
"I felt like we tried to manage the game differently than we had in the past. We have played four games in five nights. You come into it obviously without Jahlil (Okafor), but (Robert) Covington, Richaun (Holmes), just that energy is a trick to manage. So we just tried to spin the group around to keep fresh legs as much as we could. And to Indiana's credit, they're tough here. It's a great place to come and play. I love the venue. They play well at home and they did what they had to do to the close out a win." -Sixers Head Coach Brett Brown
"This time of year you want everybody healthy down the stretch. I thought we worked hard on the defensive end, but we were disjointed on the offensive end. I thought we were guarding them pretty well through the night." -Pacers head coach Frank Vogel
"Every game we try to win our matchups, especially inside. We try to play Pacers defense, get some blocks, get rebounds and get out and run." -Ian Mahinmi
- The Pacers didn't have a single player on the injury report
- Ian Mahinmi and George Hill combined to go 12-of-16 from the field for 24 points
- Myles Turner's three blocks were the most he's had in exactly a month, when he recorded three in a win over the Magic
Stat of the Night
The Pacers' defense put on a showcase, limiting the 76ers to just one point shy of their namesake. Philly's 75 points is the fewest a Pacers opponent has scored this season. Indiana's last opponent to score less than 75 was on April 3 of 2015, when the Pacers blew out the Hornets 94-74.
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Home Court Gift Shop Game Night Special
Select long sleeve Pacers t-shirt - $15. Game Night Specials can be purchased in the Home Court Gift Shop or any of our souvenir stands located on all levels of Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The special is also available online at PacersGear.com until midnight.