After beating the Squires, the Pacers traveled to Kentucky to face the Colonels. Indiana won by a close margin of 103-100. The next day, Indiana would have to face the New York Nets. The Pacers had a tough game, but Billy Knight played well—even if George McGinnis left the team for the NBA. But the Pacers lost, 118-111, going to 2-1.
However, Indiana was facing the San Diego Sails at home. Indiana got the win, 105-100, going up to 3-1. Billy Knight once again had a beautiful game, putting up 25 points alongside with teammate Billy Keller, who also had 25. The Pacers had a large fourth quarter comeback to get the win, but hey, a win is a win. The Pacers were now leading second in the Western Division of the ABA, falling behind the Denver Nuggets in first place.
But both teams would face off in the next two days to determine who is the best in the Western Division. Indiana won, taking first place. They destroyed Denver, 111-99.
But then came Julius Erving and the Nets again six days later. Oh man, oh man. And yet, Indiana got another loss. Erving nodded 36 points as the Nets cruised towards 119-102 win. The Nets defense was all over Billy Knight that day.
“The reason we were able to stop Knight this time was that we put a lot of different players on him,” said Nets’ coach Kevin Loughery.
During the fourth, the Pacers were marching back, coming within a 97-94 deficit. They were gonna make it! But suddenly, out of nowhere, Erving made a turnaround to score ten points, bringing the Nets lead up to 13. Pretty much after that, it was all over after the late-game heroics of Erving.
After that loss, the Pacers had to go through more suffering: A four-game road-trip.