Pacers at Wizards

GAME RECAP: Pacers 98, Wizards 95

Victor Oladipo leads the Pacers to a 98-95 victory over the Wizards with 33 of his own points and 7 rebounds. Bradley Beal had 22 points and 11 assists for Washington in the loss.

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GAME RECAP: Pacers 98, Wizards 95

Victor Oladipo leads the Pacers to a 98-95 victory over the Wizards with 33 of his own points and 7 rebounds. Bradley Beal had 22 points and 11 assists for Washington in the loss.
Mar 4, 2018  |  00:01

Victor Oladipo Scores 33 In Win Vs. Wizards | March 4th, 2018

Victor Oladipo hits 11-20 shots from the field on his way to scoring 33 points. Oladipo also recorded 7 rebounds, 3 assists, and 3 steals for the Pacers.
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Game Rewind: Pacers 98, Wizards 95

Sunday, March 4, 2018 at 6:00 PM ET at Capital One Arena
by Wheat Hotchkiss
Pacers.com Writer/Editor
@Wheat_Hotchkiss

Game Recap

The Pacers never trailed on Sunday night in Washington, but the outcome wasn't clear until the final buzzer sounded. Indiana (36-27) got 33 points from Victor Oladipo and survived a frantic fourth-quarter rally by the Wizards (36-28) to hold on for a 98-95 win.

With the victory, the Pacers moved a half-game ahead of Washington for fourth place in the Eastern Conference standings (and just a half-game back of third-place Cleveland). The top four teams in each conference at the end of the regular season have homecourt advantage for a best-of-seven series in the first round of the playoffs.

"It feels good but it's a long race," Pacers point guard Cory Joseph said after the win. "It doesn't mean nothing now. The playoffs are not yet and the East is real close. We got to stay even keeled. Got to stay even keeled every time. Got to stay level headed. Can't get too high on ourselves because we got another game tomorrow. That's the NBA."

PLAYOFF PICTURE: Track the Pacers' Playoff Push »

Indiana led by 15 points entering the fourth quarter, but Washington scored the first 10 points of the final frame to claw back into the game. The Wizards eventually trimmed the deficit to 87-85 after two Jodie Meeks free throws with 4:25 to play, but Oladipo answered with four straight points to push the Pacers' lead back to six.

The hosts continued to fight back, though, and — after a questionable call on Thaddeus Young — Bradley Beal knocked down two free throws with 36.6 seconds remaining to make it a 96-95 game.

Following a timeout, Oladipo missed a jumper, springing a fastbreak for Washington to take its first lead of the night. Oladipo and Joseph raced back to contest Beal's layup attempt, forcing a miss.

Oladipo then knocked down one of two free throws with 11.2 seconds left to make it a two-point game.

On the other end, Beal got a clean look at a jumper from just inside the free throw line to tie the game, but couldn't get the shot to fall. The Pacers got the rebound, but Joseph only hit one of two foul shots, giving Washington one last shot with 5.2 seconds to play.

Beal and Mike Scott both had looks to tie the game on the final possession, but both shots missed, and the Pacers survived to finish off a 2-2 road trip, rebounding after losses in Dallas and Atlanta to win in Milwaukee on Friday and Washington on Sunday.

"It feels great," Pacers head coach Nate McMillan said about his team's strong close to the road trip. "We got off to a slow start, (but) our guys bounced back and beat two really good teams."

Oladipo — who grew up in nearby Upper Marlboro, Md. and had his mother in the stands on Sunday — led all scorers with 33 points on 11-of-20 shooting to go along with seven rebounds and three steals.

"Not many times I get to play in front of her back home," Oladipo told FOX Sports Indiana's Jeremiah Johnson after the win. "This is the area where it all started for me and it was a big game for us in general. I just wanted to come out and give it my all."

He was hot from the opening tip, as Oladipo and Bojan Bogdanovic combined for 19 points in the first quarter to help the Pacers out to an early lead. Indiana led by as many as 12 points in the opening frame and held a 30-20 advantage after the first 12 minutes.

Glenn Robinson III knocked down a 3-pointer from the corner on the opening possession of the second half, but the Wizards dominated the next several minutes. Washington capitalized on five Pacers turnovers, reeling off a 12-0 run to make it a one-point game.

Indiana finally righted the ship with a 10-2 run of its own and remained in front up until halftime, scoring the final seven points of the half to take a 55-45 lead into the break.

The Blue & Gold maintained a healthy margin throughout the third quarter, closing the period with a 13-5 run to take an 80-65 lead into the fourth.

Bogdanovic added 20 points on 7-of-12 shooting for Indiana, going 3-for-5 from 3-point range. Joseph added 16 points, while Myles Turner recorded a double-double with 12 points and 13 rebounds.

Beal led Washington with 22 points, but went just 8-for-27 from the field and 2-for-9 from 3-point range. He dished out 11 assists, but also had five turnovers.

Otto Porter Jr. added 17 points and and eight rebounds for Washington in the loss.

The Pacers won't have long to rest on their laurels after Sunday's victory. The Blue & Gold return to action on Monday night when they host Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks on the second night of a back-to-back. Tipoff is set for 7:00 PM ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Inside the Numbers

Oladipo topped 30 points for the 11th time this season. He only scored 30 or more points in nine games over his first four NBA seasons.

The Pacers won despite having a season-low 11 assists on Sunday. Their previous low was 13 set in a loss at Oklahoma City on Oct. 25 and matched in a loss to Miami on Jan. 10.

Beal matched the Pacers on his own with a career-high 11 assists.

Pacers starting power forward Thaddeus Young played just under 33 minutes but did not score, going 0-for-5 from the field. He did, however, tally three of Indiana's 10 steals.

Though late misses by Oladipo and Joseph loomed large, the Pacers made their first 21 free throws on Sunday and finished the night 22-for-24 (91.7 percent) from the charity stripe.

You Can Quote Me On That

"We're looking at the standings but what we have to do is continue to win. I think this is going to certainly go down to the wire. Focus on what you need to do, that's all we need to do. Moving up one position tonight really doesn't make a difference." -McMillan

"I thought I did good. And obviously I give attention to my teammates as well that helped me out. Of course it's a team effort when you are guarding him, with the pick and rolls, actions and pin-downs and stuff...He missed a couple shots that he normal hits as well, which helps. But we did a good job." -Joseph on his defense on Beal

"Huge defensive stops in the fourth quarter. They had some good looks. They just missed luckily and we just have to continue to keep getting better and making it harder on guys and just continue to keep thriving and improving." -Oladipo

"It's not an excuse, man. I gotta hit those shots. It's plain and simple. I was tired, but you can't half-ass carry a team. You gotta go all out. I gotta make those shots." -Beal on his missed shots down the stretch

"We fought back. It's tough to come down — get down — 17 points but we did. We came back and had a chance to tie it with 10 seconds, actually have a chance to go up one with 18 seconds with Brad's layup. A couple of tough breaks didn't go our way." -Wizards head coach Scott Brooks

Stat of the Night

After going scoreless in a win over Charlotte on Jan. 29, Bogdanovic has now scored in double figures in 12 straight contests. Over that span, he is averaging 18.8 points and is shooting 46.9 percent from 3-point range.

Noteworthy

  • Sunday's win snapped a four-game losing streak for the Pacers against the Wizards.
  • With three steals on Sunday, Oladipo has now recorded a steal in 46 consecutive contests, the longest streak in franchise history.
  • The Pacers are 7-3 on the season when Bogdanovic scores 20 or more points.
  • Wizards reserve forward Kelly Oubre Jr. did not play on Sunday due to a sore left foot.
  • Indiana is 4-0 this season when wearing its City Edition uniforms, including a pair of road wins this weekend.

Up Next

Following a four-game road trip, the Pacers return to Bankers Life Fieldhouse to host Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday, March 5 at 7:00 PM ET. Tickets are available starting at just $12. Find Tickets »