Post-Game Grades: Pacers Finally Play Good Basketball Again, Beat Celtics

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The Good – Hey-o. Looks who’s back? Pacers basketball. Perhaps. This was the Celtics so who knows really, but the team was hyped and the big fellas all had some excellent moments. It must help that Boston has nobody to guard any of them but let’s not let information like heights and weights get in the way of a feel-good moment after a week or two of doldrums and panic.

The Bad – Turnovers remain a concern (10 in the first half) and a team as big as the Pacers needs to get to the line more than 13 times against a team as small as Boston. And most of all that stretch in the fourth quarter when the Celtics cut the lead down to 3 and made this sparring session momentarily look like an actual contest.

MVP – Andrew Bynum. Yeah, yeah, another guy had the sweet line and all, but the whole team and building took on a new energy when Andrew entered, flushed a powerful dunk, threw a slick bounce pass in the lane, and started glue-handing boards. We’ll talk about his defense later, but there is no question that this game will be remembered first as Bynum’s debut and second as the day the Pacers got off the schnide.

LVP – Kelly Olynyk. 1-for-9 plus that hair cut.

X Factor – Donald Sloan. Didn’t add a ton production-wise (though 4 dimes is really nice) but pushed the tempo well and helped keep the ball moving around while running the second unit. It’s certainly not all because of Sloan, but you have to give him some credit for Bynum and Luis Scola combining to go 8-for-11.

Agree? Disagree? Yell at Jared Wade on Twitter @8pts9secs

Boston Celtics 83 FinalRecap | Box Score 94 Indiana Pacers
David West, PF 35 MIN | 11-13 FG | 2-3 FT | 5 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 24 PTS | +13Good game but what’s up with missing 2 shots, dude? Beast mode.
Paul George, SF 30 MIN | 5-10 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 12 PTS | +7He had a little stretch where he hit back-to-back shots in the midrange and started off the 3rd quarter with a really nice drive to the hoop. But he also pressed a bit, and Quinn Buckner rightfully called him out for trying too hard after one of his (at least) 2 (and maybe 3) offensive fouls. Encouraging stuff, but remember we’re talking about a guy who was in MVP chatter earlier this year, so not all that encouraging to be honest.
Roy Hibbert, C 32 MIN | 3-7 FG | 0-0 FT | 9 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | +14Sorta what we’ve come to expect of late, yet with more rebounding. Grabbed two nice ones late (one on D, one to get Indiana an extra possession right after) as the Pacers needed to bury the resurgent Cs. Took a hard fall on his back that hopefully won’t amount to anything.
George Hill, PG 36 MIN | 4-11 FG | 2-2 FT | 3 REB | 4 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 12 PTS | +11Was scoring and pushing the issue some early but slowed that roll and turned out a typical Hill line. Liked his defense a lot.
Lance Stephenson, SG 36 MIN | 4-12 FG | 0-0 FT | 5 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | +19Contributed absolutely nothing early but did have a huge impact for a three-minute (or so) period late. Missed some open 3s.
Luis Scola, PF 13 MIN | 5-7 FG | 1-1 FT | 5 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 11 PTS | -2There he is. More of this, por favor.
Evan Turner, SF 23 MIN | 4-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 3 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 9 PTS | -3Seemed like he played less than 23 minutes but maybe that was because the ball was moving around a lot better among the reserves. Hard to watch his defense sometimes.
Andrew Bynum, C 16 MIN | 3-4 FG | 2-3 FT | 10 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 8 PTS | -3Welcome aboard. Animal steel stuff here. Didn’t expect him to add much of anything this season, so to see this in game one is certainly very encouraging.
Donald Sloan, PG 12 MIN | 1-3 FG | 1-2 FT | 1 REB | 4 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 3 PTS | 0Nice work.
Rasual Butler, SG 8 MIN | 0-2 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -1Played 8 minutes.
Frank VogelWhatever you put in their Gatorade, keep doing that.

Tags: Indiana Pacers

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