Post-Game Grades: Pacers Nearly Collapse But Hold on for a (Perhaps) Character-Building Win

There are a multitude of ways to view Indiana’s Game Four overtime victory. It could be a near-collapse that illustrates just how fragile this team is. It could foreshadow just how easy Miami’s route to the Eastern Conference Finals will be. It could be simply a win that counts just as much in this series as the blowout win did the other night. Or, it could be a character-building lesson in playoff basketball for an inexperienced team that will be much more valuable for future success than a run-of-the-mill 12-point win would have been.

I’m torn. But for now, I’m going with the latter. And regardless, for the NBA, it was a really fun, thrilling playoff game in a postseason that hasn’t had enough of those. That has to be good for the Pacers in some way.

Game Five will be played at 7:00 pm EST in Indiana.

Here is how each guy played individually tonight. Agree? Disagree? Express your thoughts below in the comments or yell at me (@8pts9secs) or Tim (@TimDonahue8p9s) on Twitter.

David West
The 3rd quarter has belonged to Indiana all series. Tonight, it was David West’s. He destroyed souls and looked like he was going to carry the Pacers on his shoulders to victory. But, then everything fell apart.
Danny Granger
Shot poorly — from an accuracy and selection standpoint — most of the night. Shot 6-for-15 through the first 3 quarters. Have to give him credit for knocking down 3 of his final 5 in winning time, however, including 2 layups in the 4th when Indy needed every point to avoid embarrassment.
Roy Hibbert
Good line, but his fifth and sixth fouls were reminiscent of the brainless ones he would collect two and three years ago. Didn’t really seem to have a big impact on the game.
George Hill
Terrible line, but delivered late. As inimitable Paul Flannery of Celtics’ weei.com tweeted: “So Spurs like.”
Paul George
Redemption in the sense that he played great defense on Glen Davis at the buzzer in OT to seal the win. But he really couldn’t get anything going. Was an afterthought most of the game and played very little good defense other than that final play.

Leandro Barbosa
Scored well in the 1st half as the bench flipped the script, carrying the starters instead of the other way around. Helped, at least in part, force Jameer Nelson to miss a short jumper on the final possession of regulation.
Louis Amundson
His foul-monster ways put the Magic in the bonus very early in the second half, which allowed Orlando to climb back by halftime.
Tyler Hansbrough
Active, pestering, pissing off Duke players.
Darren Collison
Perhaps the best he has played as Pacers, especially defensively. “It’s the playoffs—it has to be more physical,” he told 8p9s after Game 1. And ever since, his defense has been more physical than ever.

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Tags: 2012 Playoffs Game Recap Pacers Vs Magic

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