Pacers at Knicks

Game Recap: Knicks 104, Pacers 94

The Knicks defeated the Pacers, 104-94. RJ Barrett (32 points, eight rebounds) and Julius Randle (30 points, 16 rebounds, four assists) combined for 62 points for the Knicks in the victory, while Doma

Postgame 220104

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Game Recap: Knicks 104, Pacers 94

The Knicks defeated the Pacers, 104-94. RJ Barrett (32 points, eight rebounds) and Julius Randle (30 points, 16 rebounds, four assists) combined for 62 points for the Knicks in the victory, while Doma
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:01

Pacers Postgame: Jan. 4, 2022

Jan. 4, 2022 - Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle, Keifer Sykes, and Duane Washington Jr. speak with the media following Indiana's 104-94 loss to the Knicks in Madison Square Garden.
Jan 4, 2022  |  20:22

Recent free agent signee Keifer Sykes shines in Pacers' loss

The Pacers' 28-year-old rookie, guard Keifer Sykes, has managed to make an immediate impact after signing a two-year deal.
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:04

2-pointer by Myles Turner

Myles puts a nice move on the defender to get the basket and 1
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:08

Block by Myles Turner

Myles Turner meets Julius Randle at the rim and blocks the shot
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:12

Dunk by Myles Turner

Myles Turner throws down a vicious one handed slam
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:10

Assist by Duane Washington Jr.

Washington Jr. hits Sabonis witha. great feed for an easy basket in the paint
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:09

2-pointer by Duane Washington Jr.

Duane Washington Jr. goes to work off the dribble to knock down a 2 pointer
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:10

2-pointer by Lance Stephenson

Lance Stephenson pulls up for 2 to cut the lead to 10
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:08

3-pointer by Justin Holiday

Justin Holiday gets a second chance three off the feed from Sabonis
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:11

Steal and 3 by Keifer Sykes

Sykes gets the steal and converts his second 3 pointer to open the game
Jan 4, 2022  |  00:09

Game Rewind: Pacers 94, Knicks 104

Tuesday, January 4, 2022 at 7:30 PM ET at Madison Square Garden
by Brendan Rourke
Pacers.com Contributor

Game Recap

Attempting to break out of a slump, the undermanned Pacers traveled to Madison Square Garden to take on a Knicks team approaching full health.

Although the squad produced a valiant effort, the Blue & Gold (14-24) came up short against New York (18-20). After battling back to force a 55-55 tie at halftime, Indiana was outscored 49-39 in the second half and fell, 104-94. 
 

Youngsters Keifer Sykes (a career-high 22 points, four rebounds, six assists) and Duane Washington Jr. (17 points) played remarkably given the circumstances. But, it was not enough to overcome 32 and 30-point performances from the more experienced tandem of RJ Barrett and All-Star Julius Randle. After Sykes started hot from deep, Indiana finished just 9-of-38 (23.7 percent) from 3-point range. The squad also had an off night at the free-throw line, connecting on just 65.6 percent of their freebies.

“I just wanted to come in and be aggressive,” Sykes said. “(I want) to work and find ways to win in this league.”

“It’s a blessing,” Washington Jr. said. “Being in the NBA, it’s the best job in the world.”

Domantas Sabonis and Torrey Craig finished as the other Pacers scorers in double figures with 15 apiece. Craig was 5-of-6 from the floor – 2-of-2 from deep – hauled in seven boards, and finished +5 in 26:04. Unfortunately, he exited the game early with a right groin injury.

The Pacers got off to a fast start behind Sykes. Playing in place of Malcolm Brogdon, the guard notched six points, a steal, and an assist in the opening 1:38 to help Indiana earn a 10-4 lead. Later, he knocked in his third triple of the quarter – a snipe from the left side – to extend the lead to 18-10 at the 6:51 mark.

However, Barrett quickly erased the early Pacer advantage. The Duke product appeared to be a one-man wrecking crew, knocking in 10 consecutive points of a 16-0 New York run. The hosts stretched the lead to 26-18 before Rick Carlisle called a timeout with 3:19 to go.

A 7-2 Indiana spree, anchored by Sykes’ fourth triple, quickly reduced the deficit to five. However, Randle’s buzzer-beating fadeaway pushed the Knicks’ advantage to 32-25 before time expired. Barrett finished the frame with 19 points and the Knicks shot 54.5 percent from the floor as a team. Sykes had 12.

The Knicks’ hot shooting pushed their lead to 42-30 early in the second. Barrett hit the 20-point mark with 10:00 remaining after Immanuel Quickley, and Quentin Grimes dropped in triples.

The Blue & Gold started trimming into the lead as the midway point approached. Lance Stephenson converted a three-point play at the 8:21 mark. Later, buckets from Washington Jr. and Craig cut the deficit to 47-41 and forced a Knicks timeout with 5:55 to play.

The switch in momentum came as Justin Anderson checked into the game. The defensive-minded forward locked Alec Burks at the top of the key and forced a turnover. Sykes and Sabonis then combined for three more to cut the deficit to 47-44 with 3:57 remaining.

Down the stretch, the Pacers kept scratching and clawing its way to a 55-55 tie. Craig tallied six points in the final 3:35, and Sykes added the game-tying bucket with 14.8 seconds left to cap off his impressive 16-point first half.

As the teams traded slim leads, Sabonis and Sykes powered the offense for Indiana. Meanwhile, Randle provided the points for New York. The Blue & Gold also received a spark from Myles Turner, who powered his first points home with a thunderous right-handed slam along the baseline with 8:15 left. Washington Jr.’s speedy layup at the 7:12 mark then knotted things up 64 apiece.

Over the next few minutes, the story repeated itself. After the squads traded blows in the paint, Randle dropped in a three to break a 70-70 tie with 4:11 to play. However, Sykes came right back, hitting 2-of-3 free throws to trim the slim gap to one. The Pacers had a chance to regain a lead at the charity stripe but Sabonis misfired twice.

After that, the Knicks rattled off a 9-2 run to open up an 82-74 advantage. Craig’s three with 24.7 seconds left to cut the deficit to five for a brief moment. But, Mitchell Robinson put back a loose ball to give the Knicks an 84-77 edge heading into the final frame.

Five quick points from Anderson to start the fourth brought the Pacers right back into the ballgame. After Quickley responded, Turner finished a three-point play to cut the gap to 86-85 with 9:48 left.

After Craig hit a pair of free throws to cut the deficit to 88-87, the Blue & Gold suffered a 3:16 scoreless streak. Luckily, the defense did its best to stifle New York and limited the hosts to five points. Washington Jr then knocked in a pair of free throws to cut the gap to 93-89 with 5:45 left.

However, the buckets did not ignite the offense. Sprinkled among Indiana's misses – both from the field and the charity stripe – the Knicks dropped in six more to stretch the lead to 99-90 with 3:13 remaining.

Washington Jr. and Sykes combined and shrunk the lead to 101-94 with 1:40 left to give the Pacers a glimmer of hope. Sabonis then had a chance to cut the lead to five at the line. However, he came up empty. Randle then made 1-of-2 at the other end to give New York the eight-point edge. It essentially sealed the deal for the hosts.

Indiana hosts Kevin Durant and the Brooklyn Nets at Gainbridge Fieldhouse tomorrow night.

Inside the Numbers

Indiana has lost five consecutive games for the first time this season

The Blue & Gold lost the rebounding battle, 51-35, including 14-9 on the offensive glass

The Pacers finished 32-of-76 from the field (42.1 percent), while New York connected on 39 of its 80 attempts (48.8 percent)

You Can Quote Me On That

“It’s been different. But, for me, I’ve always been prepared. I told myself at the beginning of the season – actually in the summer – that no matter what, I wanted to play in the NBA...I just told myself to be ready for anything.” – Sykes on his journey to getting to the NBA

“It’s going to be amazing. (I’m) super super excited for the opportunity. We all are in the NBA, and we are all out there for a reason. So, we’re going to compete. We’re going to be super tough. And we’re going to leave it all out on the floor for every moment we get.” – Washington Jr. on he and Sykes having the opportunity to play against Kevin Durant and James Harden tomorrow

Stat of the Night

Indiana shot 4-of-14 (28.6 percent) from the floor and 8-of-13 (61.5 percent) from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter

Noteworthy

  • Lance Stephenson played in his 300th game as a member of the Indiana Pacers
  • The regular-season series finishes at 2-2, with both sides claiming their respective home games
  • Indiana finished with fewer than 20 points in the fourth quarter for the seventh time this season – the second against the Knicks (10 on Nov. 15)

Tickets

The Pacers return to Gainbridge Fieldhouse to host Kevin Durant, James Harden, and the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday, Jan. 5 at 7:30 PM ET. Find Tickets »





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