Pacers at Hornets

Game Recap: Pacers 116, Hornets 106

The Pacers defeated the Hornets, 116-106. Domantas Sabonis recorded 22 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists for the Pacers, his second triple-double of the season and the sixth of his career, while Terr

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Game Recap: Pacers 116, Hornets 106

The Pacers defeated the Hornets, 116-106. Domantas Sabonis recorded 22 points, 11 rebounds and 10 assists for the Pacers, his second triple-double of the season and the sixth of his career, while Terr
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:01

Postgame: Pacers Locker Room – Jan. 27, 2021

Jan 27, 2021 – Nate Bjorkgren, Justin Holiday, Malcolm Brogdon and Domantas Sabonis speak with the media following Indiana’s 116-106 win over the Charlotte Hornets Wednesday night.
Jan 27, 2021  |  02:28

Sabonis Secures Triple-Double

January 27, 2021: Domantas Sabonis gets his tenth assist to record a triple-double.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:11

Doug Dunks It

January 27, 2021: Doug McDermott cuts to the hoop for the slam.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:10

Turner's 5th Block

January 27, 2021: Myles Turner blocks his fifth shot of the night.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:09

Sabonis Slam

January 27, 2021: Domantas Sabonis runs the floor to get the dunk.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:15

Lamb's Long Distance Throw

January 27, 2021: Jeremy Lamb connects with Domantas Sabonis for two.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:12

Turner with Another Big Block

January 27, 2021: Myles Turner can't stop blocking shots.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:08

Bitadze Follows with a Slam

January 27, 2021: Goga Bitadze finishes with a dunk.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:07

Doug Dunks It

January 27, 2021: Doug McDermott slams it home.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:11

Turner Rejection

January 27, 2021: Myles Turner with an early block.
Jan 27, 2021  |  00:09

Game Rewind: Pacers 116, Hornets 106

Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET at Spectrum Center
by Brendan Rourke
Pacers.com Contributor

Game Recap

Domantas Sabonis didn’t let a minor knee bump slow him down.

Just 48 hours after being diagnosed with a left knee contusion, the big man notched his second triple-double of the season by recording 22 points, 11 rebounds, and 10 assists. His elite performance led the Pacers (11-7) to a 116-106 victory over the Charlotte Hornets (7-11) Wednesday night at Spectrum Center for their fifth road win of the season.

“Yeah, I don’t like sitting,” he said postgame. “I felt bad I couldn’t come back last game. It was a weird feeling – I was in pain, wanted to make sure with the MRI. I woke up today, felt a bit better, and then after my nap I felt good. … I felt I could play.”

After Indiana raced out to a 17-point advantage in the first quarter, Charlotte roared back in the second and took a slim lead in the second half. However, after former Indiana Hoosier Cody Zeller cut the Pacers’ lead to 94-92 with 7:45 to go, Indiana outscored Charlotte 22-14 for the remainder of the period to seal the win down the stretch.

Two additional Pacers topped the 20-point mark tonight. Though he made only one shot from deep, Doug McDermott scored a game-high 28 off the bench on 12-of-22 shooting. The 28 points were also a season-high for McDermott, who found constant success cutting into the paint.

“Doug’s been amazing all year,” Sabonis praised. “They’re pressuring him so much, they don’t want him to shoot threes. So, he’s finishing with twos. I think no one thought Doug can finish like that, but we’ve known for a while now and now he’s having his opportunity to do it. I was trying to find him.”

Malcolm Brogdon had another presidential night, recording 25 on 9-of-17 shooting, hauling in seven boards and dishing out six assists.

Trailing 13-8 with 7:28 to go in the first, head coach Nate Bjorkgren had seen enough. He called a timeout to regroup the squad. It appeared to ignite the team.

The Pacers raced out to an eight-point lead behind a 15-2 run. Justin Holiday, Jeremy Lamb, and Brogdon all connected from deep, while Sabonis found a pair of buckets in the paint. His driving left-handed layup with 4:08 remaining in the first gave Indiana a 23-15 lead and forced Hornets coach James Borrego to call his first timeout.

The timeout did little to stop Indiana, as Holiday nailed his third 3-pointer of the period from the right baseline. The snipe started another run of nine unanswered points for the Blue & Gold. Sabonis’ heads-up outlet pass to a streaking McDermott gave Indiana a 32-15 lead with 1:34 left in the first. The Blue & Gold’s stifling defense held Charlotte to just four points over the last 6:04 of the frame. They finished the first with a commanding 36-19 lead.

But Charlotte responded in the second quarter, outscoring Indiana 36-23 in the frame to pull to within four before halftime. The club opened the second with an 8-2 run before Goga Bitadze halted things with a putback slam. But they kept on chipping away.

Brownsburg native Gordon Hayward scored five straight, and Devonte’ Graham’s 3-pointer at the 7:52 mark trimmed the once 17-point lead down to 40-35. Coach Bjorkgren attempted to slow things down with another timeout. Unfortunately, it didn’t help.

Seven unanswered points from P.J. Washington eventually erased Indiana’s early advantage and knotted things up at 42 apiece. Zeller’s dunk with 4:21 to go finally pushed Charlotte ahead 46-44.

Indiana regained some control late in the second. Justin Holiday’s fourth trey and a T.J. McConnell jumper gave the club a 54-49 lead with 2:05 remaining. Charlotte responded to nab a 55-54 lead. However, Brogdon hit a technical free throw and Sabonis banked in a wild shot-clock beating 3-pointer to push Indiana ahead 59-55 before the break.

What was a fast-paced first half turned into a foul fest for Indiana early in the third. The sporadic play allowed the Hornets to find extra possessions and grind their way to a 67-63 lead at the 8:14 mark of the third. But, the Blue & Gold fought through their struggles and tied things up at 67-all on a gritty layup from Brogdon amid three Charlotte defenders.

After an Indiana timeout, the squad outscored Charlotte 12-6 in a 3:33 span to grab a 79-73 lead with 2:31 left in the third. During the run, Sabonis tallied five more points – including an emphatic one-handed slam – while Holiday connected on his fifth and final 3-point shot of the night. He finished with 19.

Charlotte kept a close eye on Indiana, however, as Miles Bridges connected on a trey to cut Indiana’s lead to 79-78 with 1:37 left. But, as is tradition, Brogdon carried Indiana late in the quarter. The president recorded the final five Pacers points of the frame, including a cold-blooded three with the shot-clock expiring, to grab an 84-80 lead before the fourth.

The Pacers responded another Bridges three with eight unanswered to open up a 92-83 lead with 10:07 to play. A few minutes later, Zeller’s layup attempt had a fortunate bounce off the back of the rim and pulled Charlotte to within two.

But Indiana paid no mind. 0:41 later, McConnell drove the lane and collapsed the Hornets’ defense. He then flicked a pass out to a wide-open McDermott for a three with 7:04 to play to push Indiana ahead 99-92.

The Blue & Gold stretched their lead to double digits for the first time in the second half at the 4:34 mark. McConnell found Brogdon for a 26-foot triple on the right wing that put Indiana ahead 108-98. It would be his eighth of nine total assists on the night. Less than 30 seconds later, Sabonis found McDermott cutting into the lane to put the Pacers ahead by 12.

Sabonis notched his 10th assist on a similar play to McDermott with 3:03 remaining that gave Indiana a 112-100 lead. From there, the defense kept the Hornets from mounting a serious comeback. The Blue & Gold cruised to the victory down the stretch. However, they’ll have to keep the victory celebration short, as they’ll now face a more-motivated Hornets team again in less than 48 hours from now.

“(This) game doesn’t matter,” Brogdon said. “You take the good from it, you learn from the bad, and you up your intensity for the next game. You cannot relax in this league and you can’t relax this season – especially when you’re playing a team two times in a row.”

Inside the Numbers

The Pacers shot 45-of-85 (51.1 percent) from the floor, including 16-of-40 (40.0 percent) from deep.

Indiana dished out 34 total assists tonight, tying its season-high game total. It was the second-most assists accumulated by a Charlotte opponent this season.

The Blue & Gold outscored the Hornets in the paint 50-42

Myles Turner added five blocks tonight, pushing his league-leading season total to 67

You Can Quote Me On That

“They’re a very good team, they are. It’s a game of momentums and what I told the guys at halftime was we had our big first quarter, they had a big second quarter… but our string was a little bit longer than theirs. Meaning, I don’t know what we were up at half maybe 4 or 5, and I said we don’t want to trade like that anymore. We want to run the highs much longer than the lows and we did a better job of that in the second half instead of the trading baskets. I liked our pace and aggressiveness more in the third and fourth quarters.” –Coach Bjorkgren on staying level-headed when the Hornets closed the gap

“Yeah, one of the most talented bigs in the league. I think him and Joker (Nikola Jokic) are the best passing bigs in the League. He’s very versatile, he’s an All-Star. His game and his performance night in and night out speaks for itself. He’s a hell of a player.” –Brogdon on Sabonis

“We adjusted to that on the fly. That actually wasn’t something we scouted. I think they wanted to do that – once we got rolling, they really picked up their pressure to try to disrupt us. Then it was really Coach (Bjorkgren) – he was calling backdoors. A lot of that stuff is calls he’s making on the fly. So, that’s definitely a nod to coach on the adjustments.” –Brogdon on handling the pressure and finding McDermott cutting all night

Stat of the Night

After scoring 24 points or more in his last four games, Charlotte’s Gordon Hayward was held to just 16 points 6-of-14 shooting in 40:22 of playing time.

Noteworthy

  • Indiana has won four straight games against Charlotte dating back to last season.
  • T.J. McConnell has dished out exactly nine assists in back-to-back games.
  • The Pacers will face the Hornets again on Jan. 29, marking the third time this season Indiana has played a team two times in a row.

Tickets

A limited number of tickets for all upcoming Pacers home games from January 24 through March 4 are now on sale. Single Game Tickets »   Health & Safety Guidelines »





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