Post-Game Grades: Pacers Lose 12th Straight in Atlanta

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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.

Indiana Pacers 87 FinalRecap | Box Score 97 Atlanta Hawks
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.

Topics: Game Recap

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  • snopup

    Pacers won Game 6 of last year’s first-round series in Atlanta.

  • Realist

    5 of our 7 losses have been on the second game of a back to back and on the road. Meh

  • khackett

    Love DWest but some of his turnovers are just awful. It seems he’s playing the high post a little more this season? His assists are up, so maybe it’s a good formula and he’s just growing into the role? I think they are trying to take a page out of Duncan and Garnett’s usage. I haven’t watched enough, just a guess. I know George is less a facilitator on purpose this season, but is DWest more of one on purpose?

    • Ian

      He’s a good passer but he also is a risky passer. He does make some really bad turnovers.

    • wesmont

      I think we are spoiled.They must have had a dozen games nearly as bad as this last year.they have gotten so good we just don’t expect them to throw a back-to-back clunker ever.That being said,this was a stinkbomb.

  • Ian

    I guess this was just a schedule loss. It’s still frustrating to see them come out so lifeless sometimes. Atlanta was really hot to start the game which hurt as much as the Pacers being not-hot. You could definitely see the effort wavering and a few points I thought the Pacers were just going to capitulate.

    I think George deserves a better grade. Not just because he scored a bunch but because he seemed to be trying to will the Pacers back into the game by being very aggressive, something he hasn’t done a lot of lately. Korver leads the NBA in 4 point plays and George’s real mistake was going under the screen, because when he fought through it his momentum carried him into Korver.

    The Pacers don’t have much of an answer if the other team is playing a 5 that can shoot 3s other than to punish him on the other end. But yeah Hibbert didn’t have anything last night.

  • Jack Wright

    u could smell this loss from about 57,000 miles away. PG hopefully got back on track at least. his fg % doesn’t reflect how well he played/shot

  • Tieshone

    Amazing article. Rasual Butler was obviously the star of the game. He looked like a young Dominique Wilkins out there. If they continue to use him in triple threat situations he could average 30-18-12. Paul George has been a cancer to this team. They need to trade him for what ever they can get. Maybe send him to Miami for birdman and battier? Just a thought.