Pacers vs Wizards

Game Recap: Wizards 133, Pacers 132

Russell Westbrook made two free throws with 1.0 second remaining in overtime as well as the game-saving block to lift the Wizards over the Pacers, 133-132, in overtime. Russell Westbrook finished the

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Game Recap: Wizards 133, Pacers 132

Russell Westbrook made two free throws with 1.0 second remaining in overtime as well as the game-saving block to lift the Wizards over the Pacers, 133-132, in overtime. Russell Westbrook finished the
May 8, 2021  |  00:02

Postgame: Pacers Locker Room – May 8, 2021

May 8, 2021 – Nate Bjorkgren, Caris LeVert, and Domantas Sabonis speak with the media following Indiana's 133-132 loss to the Washington Wizards at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
May 8, 2021  |  02:01

Caris LeVert (35 points) Highlights vs. Washington Wizards

Caris LeVert (35 points) Highlights vs. Washington Wizards, 05/08/2021
May 8, 2021  |  00:01

Domantas Sabonis (30 points) Highlights vs. Washington Wizards

Domantas Sabonis (30 points) Highlights vs. Washington Wizards, 05/08/2021
May 8, 2021  |  00:01

Martin Beats the Clock

May 8, 2021 - Kelan Martin makes an easy layup before the shot clock expires.
May 8, 2021  |  00:11

Goga Pounds It Home

May 8, 2021 - Goga Bitazde with a nice finish down low.
May 8, 2021  |  00:07

LeVert Beats the Buzzer

May 8, 2021 - Caris LeVert flushes a three to end the third quarter.
May 8, 2021  |  00:06

Brissett Rises Up and Throws It Down

May 8, 2021 - Oshae Brissett comes down the lane for a huge slam.
May 8, 2021  |  00:08

LeVert & Sabonis Connect

May 8, 2021 - Caris LeVert grabs the loose ball and passes to Domantas Sabonis for a big dunk.
May 8, 2021  |  00:07

Holiday Swats It Away

May 8, 2021 - Justin Holiday says no with a strong block.
May 8, 2021  |  00:07

Sabonis Gets the Bounce

May 8, 2021 - Aaron Holiday drops it off to Domantas Sabonis for the old-fashioned three-point play.
May 8, 2021  |  00:06

McDermott Banks It

May 8, 2021 - After a handoff from Domantas Sabonis, Doug McDermott nails a three at the top of the key.
May 8, 2021  |  00:06

Game Rewind: Pacers 132, Wizards 133 (OT)

Saturday, May 8, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse
by Brendan Rourke
Pacers.com Contributor

Game Recap

After giving up 154 points to the Washington Wizards five days ago, the Pacers had revenge on their mind tonight at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. However, after a tough battle featuring 11 ties and 33 lead changes, the Blue & Gold fell short in overtime, 133-132. The loss places Indiana in 10th place in the Eastern Conference standings — the final playoff play-in spot. The magic number to officially clinch a spot is three.

On a night where Bradley Beal finished with 50 points, its was Russell Westbrook who delivered the final blow to the Pacers. With his team trailing 132-131 with 1.0 seconds left, he misfired a potential game-winning jumper from the right elbow but was fouled by Caris LeVert. He sank both attempts at the line and blocked LeVert’s game-winning 3-point attempt on the other end to seal the deal. Westbrook (33 points, 19 rebounds, 15 assists) finished the night with his 181st career triple-double, tying Indiana native Oscar Robertson's all-time NBA record.

"I thought we had it played perfectly," coach Nate Bjorkgren said of the final play in overtime. "I thought our guys played their (tails) off. Every one of them that stepped in the game...We deserved that one."

Once again, Beal and Westbrook’s performances overshadowed 35 and 30-point nights from LeVert and Domantas Sabonis. Sabonis finished with 13 rebounds and 13 assists for his 8th triple-double this season. LeVert, who hauled in a team-high 14 boards, finished two assists shy of a triple-double as well.

"We fought," LeVert said postgame. "We fought hard all night. Sometimes, in basketball, you feel like you do everything right — you should win — and it doesn't happen."

After a quick Indiana start pushed them to an early lead, the Wizards rattled off a 12-3 run over a 2:39 span to take a 15-10 lead and force an Indiana timeout with 7:47 left in the frame.

Out of the timeout, the Pacers responded valiantly. Starting with Doug McDermott’s third bucket of the frame, the squad used a 10-2 surge to regain a three-point lead with 5:17 to go. The Blue & Gold found success by pushing the pace and creating mismatches in the paint for easy finishes.

Down the stretch, the teams remained in a tight battle. Indiana stretched its lead to five before a corner three from Westbrook soon tied things at 28 apiece with 1:22 to go. Another jumper from the guard with 2.2 seconds remaining gave Washington a 33-32 edge heading into the second.

The Blue & Gold got offensive sparks early in the second from guards Aaron Holiday and T.J. McConnell. Holiday started the frame with a bucket, then found Goga Bitadze for a wide-open three for five quick points. Later, with Washington threatening, McConnell scored six straight and found Justin Holiday for a trey on the left side to give the Pacers a 46-40 lead with 8:11 to play.

But the Wizards stuck around thanks to the one-man effort of Beal. The NBA’s second-leading scorer tallied 12 straight for the Wizards to regain a 52-50 Washington lead with 4:09 remaining. Beal’s run included a lucky 3-pointer that banked in as the guard flailed and hoped for a foul call.

The final four minutes played out similar to much of the first half. Slim leads switched between the squads on nearly every possession. The Pacers looked to take a 62-60 lead into halftime after Sabonis completed a three-point play in the paint. But, a buzzer-beating trey from Westbrook flipped the script just before the break.

The Blue & Gold began the third with force. Energized from the break, LeVert guided the squad to a 14-4 run over the first 3:17 to take a 76-67 lead. Before a Washington timeout, Oshae Brissett ended a Pacers possession with a punishing two-handed slam off a feed from Sabonis. It got the entire team fired up. Using his speed, Edmond Sumner concluded the run with a pair of free throws and a finger-roll layup in transition.

Over the next several minutes, the Pacers held on to a multi-possession lead. Beal soon closed the gap to 84-83 and had two layup opportunities to overtake Indiana, but missed on both. A pair of free throws from Sabonis extended the small advantage to 86-83 with 5:04 remaining.

Showing an improvement on the defensive side, Indiana kept Washington to just two points over the next 3:15. Meanwhile on offense, Sabonis showed his array of talents, notching seven straight for Indiana to extend the lead to double digits for the first time (95-85). The Wizards threatened to cut the lead to six before the fourth quarter; however, LeVert connected on a one-legged, running 3-pointer before the shot-clock expired. The acrobatic shot gave Indiana a 101-92 lead going into the final frame.

Despite four quick points from Beal, Indiana’s bench rotation tightened up and regained a 109-99 advantage after a clean step-back jumper from Aaron Holiday at the 9:18 mark.

Indiana pushed the lead to as high as 12 before Washington used seven unanswered, including five more from Beal, to cut the lead to 114-109 with 6:29 to go. The surge forced Indiana to call a timeout and regroup.

Out of the timeout, the Pacers appeared to right the ship. A bucket from Kelan Martin and a free throw from LeVert regained a 117-111 Indiana lead. However, the Wizards kept on pushing. Five straight from the visitors trimmed Indiana’s lead to 117-116 with 3:26 to go.

After LeVert connected on a floater to push Indiana's lead to three, Washington responded with consecutive easy layups — including Beal's 50th point — to take a 120-119 lead with 1:28 remaining.

LeVert responded swiftly, drilling a contested 3-pointer to regain a two-point edge with 1:15 to go. However, the lead switched hands once more after Daniel Gafford and Westbrook found points to regain a 124-122 Washington lead with 21.4 seconds remaining.

With Indiana in control of the ball, LeVert quickly drove the paint and tied the match with a tough reverse layup through traffic. Washington regained possession with 13.4 seconds left but came up empty after Westbrook’s jumper fell short. The squads headed to overtime tied, 124-124.

Sabonis and Westbrook traded buckets to start the frame. Indiana then grabbed a 130-126 lead behind back-to-back buckets from Brissett and LeVert.

Five straight from Washington then pushed the visitors in front by one. But, Sumner’s shot-clock beating jumper gave Indiana a 132-131 lead with 1:03 left.

With less than a minute to go, both sides came up empty. As Washington regained possession, Justin Holiday swatted away Westbrook’s layup attempt, but the ball fell into Gafford's hands and called a timeout.

Indiana played a great defensive scheme, trapping Westbrook and giving him a tough look. However, LeVert was called for a foul on the final shot with 1.0 seconds to go. Westbrook sank both shots at the charity stripe to push the Wizards in front.

LeVert’s final 3-point attempt was blocked by Westbrook, and the Pacers fell one point shy of the victory.

Inside The Numbers

Washington won the rebounding battle, 60-49.

While all five Pacers starters finished in double figures, not a single bench player hit the 10-point mark tonight. T.J. McConnell led all bench players with eight points.

Both teams took 30 attempts from the charity stripe. Washington finished with 26 makes, while Indiana finished with 25.

In his first full game back after suffering a knee contusion, Edmond Sumner finished with 13 points in 29:47 of game time.

You Can Quote Me On That

"I think so. The coaches and my teammates look to me for making big plays down the stretch and things like that. So, I feel like my body is turning that corner right now, at the right time for sure." –LeVert on how he’s hitting his stride at the right time.

"Obviously, it sucks to lose a game like that at the end. But yeah, it was a fun game. I felt like we fought, we played team basketball, and we just had good emotions and good vibes out there. So, I think that's the most important thing right now for us." –Sabonis on the game tonight

"Everybody just sticking together. This team wants to perform well. They really do. They care. They have a very high care factor. It's fun to be a part of. Even when they're on the bench, they're cheering for the next guy." –Bjorkgren on the team over the past two games

Stat of the Night

Bradley Beal (50 points) and Russell Westbrook (33 points) combined to score 62.4 percent of Washington’s points tonight. Rui Hachimura had the next highest point total for the Wizards with 13.

Noteworthy

  • Domantas Sabonis finished with at least 30 points in all three games against the Wizards this season.
  • The Wizards swept the season series against Indiana for the first time since the 2006-07 season.

Up Next

The Pacers tip off the final week of the season on Monday, May 10 in Cleveland, when they take on the Cleveland Cavaliers at 7:30 PM ET.

Tickets

A limited number of tickets for all remaining Pacers home games are now on sale. Single Game Tickets »   Health & Safety Guidelines »





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