Jan 14, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Pacers small forward Paul George (24) gets around Sacramento Kings small forward Rudy Gay (8) for a shot at the basket during the second half of the game at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Indiana Pacers beat Sacramento Kings 116 to 92. Mandatory Credit: Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana Pacers Steal Sacramento's Spirit In Big Win

Jan 14, 2014; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Pacers shooting guard Lance Stephenson (1) passes the ball away from a group of Sacramento Kings during the first half of the game aat Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Marc Lebryk-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana Pacers  (30-7)  116

Sacramento Kings  (13-23)  92

Tuesday night in Indianapolis your hometown Indiana Pacers hosted the Sacramento Kings.  Tip-off was at 7:00 p.m. in our beautiful Bankers Life Fieldhouse and it was apparent that the Blue and Gold came to play.

It didn’t take half of the first quarter for all five starters to get on the score board.  Lance Stephenson brought an energy and created a couple of single-handed fast breaks.  Not to mention David West literally attacking the basket.

At the end of the half Indiana led the Kings 59-45 after an even more impressive second quarter displaying more of the Stephenson spark and a constantly improving defensive effort.  DeMarcus Cousins, who proved to be the only Sacramento scoring threat, lead the way for his team with 12 points and although down 14 points the feel was the Kings were still very much in this game.  Lance Stephenson lead the Pacers with 13 points.

The third quarter saw the lead only be cut by two points.  It was basically the Paul George and David West show for Indiana on the offensive end with Roy Hibbert adding  a couple of buckets and a pair of free throws.  Cousins attempted to keep his team alive increasing his total to 31 for the game where it would remain.  If only he had some help.

It was obvious early in the fourth quarter that Sacramento had it lost it’s zest that was so easy to see in the first half.  With the entire bench seeing some minutes tonight the Pacers won leaving a final score of 116-92 and all players but one were able to score and all but one starter ended in double figures.

The key stories for myself in tonight’s game were simple but highly anticipated.  Paul George along with his team on a whole seem to find their way out of an offensive slump.  George matched Cousins 31 points to share the honors of the games leading scorer.  He was 4-7 from behind the arc and I myself find it nice to see such a newly found superstar handle his recent struggles.  He has simply just kept on keeping on.

Secondly was the ever increasing energy and effort brought to the court by none other than Lance Stephenson.  But not simply this.  He is showing consistent improvement and his energy is harnessed like a special power.  It’s crazy to think how young he is and where his abilities will be in years to come.

Last but certainly not least is the defense.  You are taught all the way from the youngest of leagues of the utmost importance of good sound defense.  Somewhere along the way on the road to the NBA it seems to get forgotten.  Your Indiana Pacers are reminding everyone that good team basketball can slow down and even cripple the offensive production of the highest scoring teams in the league.

Barring an injury to a key player, and our bench has proven to be capable, the Indiana Pacers will only continue their winning ways and will be a fun team to watch for a true basketball lover.  I for one am already looking forward to Thursdays game against the New York Knicks.  Tip-off is at 7:00 p.m. here in Indianapolis.  I can’t wait for ‘Melo’ to be mellowed.

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