Post-Game Grades: Pacers Lose 12th Straight in Atlanta
Being productive at the beginning of games has been an issue of late for Indiana no matter where they play, but I am under the impression that the Pacers’ energy and usual defensive supremacy is drained the second they touch Phillips Arena’s hardwood.
Coming into tonight, they had lost 11 straight in games on Atlanta’s home court. It is now twelve straight.
To fuel their victory, the Hawks made of 23 three-point shots, powered by Pero
Nowitzki Antic and Kyle Korver who both made three a piece. Even with Al Horford sidelined by an injury and Paul Millsap missing 9-of-10 shots, Indiana had problems defending pick-and-rolls as well as dribble penetration. Vogel and crew tightened it up defensively in the fourth quarter, allowing just four made shots, but when you start the game with a 12-point handicap in the first 12 minutes, it’s hard to make up the deficit.
Bottom line: Without Lance Stephenson’s shot creation and forcefulness on both sides of the floor, it was a mighty struggle throughout to generate easy offense outside of Paul George. The fact that this was Indiana’s fourth game in five nights certainly had something to do with tonight’s performance, but that’s no excuse.
This was downright awful.
Here is how each guy played individually tonight. Agree? Disagree? Express your thoughts below in the comments or yell at Jalen Bishop (@Jalen_NY) on Twitter.
|David West, PF 33 MIN | 4-11 FG | 0-0 FT | 11 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 8 PTS | -8
Dismal. Not sure if this will be a trend but West is shooting 36% over the past five games. And he made multiple horrible turnovers late.
|Danny Granger, SF 32 MIN | 4-10 FG | 5-5 FT | 5 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 3 TO | 14 PTS | -9
In his first start since Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Finals in 2012, he had his highest scoring total so far this season. Got to the free throw line at a fair rate but a few missed three-pointers that were makable.
|Paul George, SF 42 MIN | 11-25 FG | 3-4 FT | 12 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 4 TO | 28 PTS | -10
The main source of offense tonight with Stephenson sidelined. He had a hot third quarter that helped close Atlanta’s lead. Then again … watched Korver hit a three instead of defending him and fouled him for a four-point play.
|Roy Hibbert, C 22 MIN | 1-8 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 2 TO | 2 PTS | -21
Hibbert was so bad tonight that Vogel elected not to play him in the fourth quarter.
|George Hill, PG 33 MIN | 4-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 10 PTS | -10
He rarely turns it over, and he didn’t tonight. Failed to hit open three pointers.
|Luis Scola, PF 19 MIN | 2-6 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | +1
Scola missed Stephenson’s dribble penetration that would lead to open mid-range attempts. Played with West down the stretch of the game. Nothing great.
|Ian Mahinmi, C 18 MIN | 2-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 3 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | +8
He was +8 on the night — but it did not seem like it.
|C.J. Watson, PG 24 MIN | 4-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | -1
Steady game. Played the caretaker role nicely.
|Rasual Butler, SG 16 MIN | 3-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 1 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | 0
In his first double-digit minute game since December 18th against Miami, Butler was first off the bench. Hit two threes.