The Indiana Pacers came out energized on Tuesday night after a nice, three day break between games. Early on, the Pacers established their dominance inside with a 3-pt play courtesy of Roy Hibbert less than fifteen seconds into the game.
On the next two plays, the Pacers tried something new: they ran the exact same play twice in a row. Poor Boogie Cousins didn’t know what hit him.
A George Hill back cut and beautiful Roy Hibbert assist later, the Pacers had taken early control of the contest.
Not to be outdone, David West decided to get in on the action and remind us who the Pacers’ best front court passer really is. Here, West finds a slashing Lance Stephenson for an easy layup.
As we all know, the Pacers are at their best when Lance is prominently involved in the action. That back cut seemed to get him started, and soon he was doing what Lance does best – ripping down rebounds and going coast to coast, all with a little “Skip to my Lou” flare added in for good measure.
In the second quarter, Indy settled down a bit and started displaying some of their beautiful, “boring” basketball that is just so beautifully effective.
Paul George and George Hill took turns finding each other for open 3-pointers as the rest of the Pacers ensured quality floor-spacing to create the good looks.
Then, they teamed up for what was probably the prettiest play of the half, some great team defense that culminated with a lovely Paul George reverse.
Indy eventually built up a 17-point lead before coasting into halftime, up by 14.
They even threw in a beautiful wrinkle to their favorite end of the half weave play that Pacers fans have come to know and love. Watch the crafty David West (illegally) sneak up the baseline out of bounds for the beautiful dime from Lance to end the quarter. When you catch Indy’s regular play-by-play guys off-guard, you know you’ve created something new.
What’s that? You wanted some more skipping from Lance? Oh, you didn’t? That must be the 14-year old me begging for it. I am happy to oblige…