Post-Game Grades: Pacers Get Winded in Rocky Mountain Air
The Good: The Pacers were playing on a back to back and their 3rd game in 4 days. In addition the game was played in mile-high air in Denver which is known for fatiguing road teams. Nonetheless, they had a chance to win it with around 5 minutes left in the game. Unfortunately, they weren’t able to take advantage and pull out the victory.
The Bad: Defense. The Pacers allowed the Nuggets to shoot 48% from the field and 40% from deep. They got to the rim a little too easily thanks to some lackluster perimeter D. The absence of Roy Hibbert, with foul trouble, didn’t help either. The Nuggets took 32 shot attempts in the restricted area and made 22 of those for 69%.
MVP: Wilson Chandler. 25 points, 4 made 3s and great defense on Paul George. He held Paul George to just 8 points in the 1st half (18 total) on 3/9 shooting and 0/3 from deep. His 13 points in the 3rd quarter helped offset the Pacers best scoring quarter of the season.
LVP: Roy Hibbert. Foul trouble limited his minutes, but when he was in he wasn’t making much of a difference. He played the entire 1st quarter and was defended mostly by J.J. Hickson, who’s 5 inches shorter than him, however he only attempted 2 field goals.
X-Factor: Nate Robinson. He had 12 points in the 2nd quarter including his own 10-0 run.
Defining Moment: Paul George hit a technical free throw with 4:48 left in the game to cut the Nuggets’ lead to 97-91. After that they finished the game missing 7-of-8 shots and missing 4-of-7 free throws. They had a chance but couldn’t execute.
|David West, PF 32 MIN | 6-20 FG | 4-4 FT | 6 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 16 PTS | -2Was part of the run in the 3rd quarter that cut the lead to 10, but other than that he generally looked tired and frustrated against Kenneth Faried.|
|Paul George, SF 34 MIN | 6-18 FG | 6-10 FT | 11 REB | 6 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 18 PTS | -7Finished with a nice stat line but only shot 6-18, just 6-10 from the charity stripe and 0-4 from deep. Also allowed Wilson Chandler way too many open looks from three.|
|Roy Hibbert, C 20 MIN | 2-3 FG | 1-3 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | +3Gotta stay outta foul trouble.|
|George Hill, PG 33 MIN | 4-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 4 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 10 PTS | -5Quietly nice night offensively but I’ll do without some of that defense on Ty Lawson in the second half.|
|Lance Stephenson, SG 40 MIN | 10-16 FG | 2-2 FT | 10 REB | 7 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 6 TO | 23 PTS | -12Was the Pacers´ lone source of energy for most of the game. Tried to do too much towards the end, but this kind of effort is exactly what you want from Lance on the second night of a back to back.|
|Luis Scola, PF 21 MIN | 3-9 FG | 0-0 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | -10Missed too many open mid-range shots tonight.|
|Danny Granger, SF 18 MIN | 3-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 7 PTS | -5Decent offensive night from Danny and made a nice move to get to the basket that made him look around 5 years younger.|
|Ian Mahinmi, C 19 MIN | 1-4 FG | 3-4 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | -17The stats don’t look great but he served as a solid defensive presence with Roy sitting. Had a nasty dunk on J.J. Hickson that was probably one the better dunks of the year for the Pacers.|
|C.J. Watson, PG 16 MIN | 1-3 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -10Went on a nice little run at the beginning of the 4th but his defense on Nate Robinson was pretty awful.|