Post-Game Grades: Roy Hibbert Steps Up, Leads Pacers to Victory


The Good: Roy Hibbert came out of the games looking like one of the best big men in the league. There were plenty of other things to like about the team’s effort (and ESPECIALLY it’s lack of second-half turnovers … 2) but nothing was remotely as significant as this. Indiana played some excellent defense and it’s paint anchor was a factor in that. Throw in his 28 points and overall presence on the court, and we’re looking at a team that might not get laughed at now when it talks about competing with Miami next round. (Although let’s chill on that, me.)

The Bad: The wing tandem didn’t score nearly enough or force the ball into the paint. Paul George, in particular was passive offensively throughout the game, though he did assert himself in a BIG way late, getting to the hoop on multiple occasions. Process-wise, you fault Lance Stephenson less, because his misses were generally on open jumpers, but you would still like to see him take charge and press the issue some. Then again, he did also do this later and probe the defense to create some good looks. Better late than never, that’s for sure — and perhaps that can be a microcosm cliché for this whole Pacers playoffs.

MVP: Luis Scola. No I kid. It’s Roy Hibbert. It just feels weird to type it out like that to be honest. People (including myself, because … obviously) have been clowning him ragged lately, so I’m pretty happy that he has such a big middle finger in case, ya know, he feels like putting it to use this evening.

LVP: Luis Scola. For serious this time. He wasn’t good at all.

X Factor: Ian Mahimni. When he can come in an play this well at the same time when Roy Hibbert is playing well? Man, that’s a bunch of heart burn for the competition. Tonight, he ensured Indiana had two stout rim protectors who were more than holding their own on offense as well. Too bad he died during that tragic Marcin Gortat gasoline fight. He will be missed.

Washington Wizards 82 Final
Recap | Box Score
86 Indiana Pacers
David West, PF 37 MIN | 3-8 FG | 3-4 FT | 6 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 9 PTS | +10

Big ol’ yikes really. Made a few nice decisions late in the game and hit a big jumper when they really needed it but not sure that makes up for some serious non-production during his first 30 minutes on the court.

Paul George, SF 41 MIN | 5-13 FG | 1-2 FT | 6 REB | 4 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 11 PTS | +6

Sorta similar to West. Though his defense was high level throughout and he came up bigger late. That drive and dunk was special.

Roy Hibbert, C 33 MIN | 10-13 FG | 8-8 FT | 9 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 2 BLK | 0 TO | 28 PTS | +16

My man.

George Hill, PG 33 MIN | 6-12 FG | 1-2 FT | 4 REB | 3 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 0 TO | 14 PTS | +10

More of this, please and thank you.

Lance Stephenson, SG 44 MIN | 3-12 FG | 4-4 FT | 7 REB | 5 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 12 PTS | +8

The FG% is gross, but it was mostly him missing open shots. I mean, missing open shots is not good by any means, but it’s hard to get all finger wavy about it. Showed up later though. That late step back was monster and hit a bit triple as well.

Luis Scola, PF 11 MIN | 0-4 FG | 1-1 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 1 PTS | -4

He’ll be better next game, you gotta presume.

Evan Turner, SF 8 MIN | 0-0 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 0 PTS | -3

He probably won’t.

Ian Mahinmi, C 14 MIN | 3-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 2 REB | 0 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 6 PTS | -14

It this is what they get out of 14 minutes of Ian every night, let’s start talking contract extension.

C.J. Watson, PG 18 MIN | 2-5 FG | 0-0 FT | 1 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 5 PTS | -9

Not as impactful as he has been in past games, but I think that might be good since it means Indiana wasn’t trailing by a bunch when he entered the contest.

Tags: Indiana Pacers

  • Ian

    In a game that felt like the Pacers were controlling and almost dominating, I had trouble putting my finger on why it was so close. Rebounding was still a big issue. Not as bad as game one, but Washington still had 11 offensive boards to the Pacers 4.

    Lance and George really struggled on offense. Too often they took ill-advised iso jumpers. Getting the ball late in the clock as George did a few times, this is understandable, but a bunch of them were taken with 10+ seconds left.

    I’ve been talking about this with a friend and I think this is where the Pacers really struggle in not having a true point guard. While the team has some willing passers, no one has the mentality of knowing how to get guys going, like Chris Paul, or even LeBron do. If PG or Lance see someone miss a few open shots, they stop getting them the ball, which causes that player to check out, and PG and Lance to do more iso.

    Running a more structured offensive system, like the triangle, might help. But certainly not something that can be put in place now. If Vogel keeps his job (and I think that depends more on HOW the team plays from now on, rather than how far they go), I think they need to focus on putting in a new offense for next year. In fact I’d like to see the Pacers go get a dedicated offensive coordinator.

    The other thing was that the Pacers were forcing Washington to do what the Pacers wanted them to do, shoot mid range jumpers. Unfortunately, they were pretty on fire. For the game they went 14-29 by my count, and it was 9 of 17 at halftime. The Pacers were 8 of 18 from midrange (seemed worse, with all those Luis Scola misses). The very best mid range shooters in the NBA shoot around %50 from that distance, so to go 14-29 as a team is really good. They were, perhaps, a bit TOO open, but still, I think the Pacers can live with washington taking %36 of their shots from there. If they can keep that up, and cut down the offensive boards a bit more, then they have a good chance at every game in the series.

    • Jack Wright

      When did it feel like we were even close to dominating? Lance lifted us to a little 6 pt lead I think in the 3rd, but you had to assume at that point that Vogel would be taking him out very soon, which he did, and that within minutes the lead would be gone, which it was. Offensively everyone played bad but Roy. Well, Hill played satisfactory.

      What I did like about the game is that it’s another instance of our ability to basically manufacture wins when the game’s tight or we’re slightly down late in the 4th. We hunker down well. hah

      And I agree, Hill as point guard is limiting us. He usually just dribbles the shot clock out and then makes an unproductive pass. But I completely disagree that Lance couldn’t be a true point guard type of passer. He has excellent court vision and from what I can tell he’s perfectly willing to share. To me the big problems are 1) George Hill not doing anything, not initiating anything, 2) too much force-feeding the ball to Roy when he’s not deep, and 3) not being able to knock down shots. Lance starts to touch the ball more in the 2nd half most games, and even take over as the point during stretches.. And we happen to be a 2nd half team. I think if you give Lance more control of the ball throughout the entire game, we instantly become harder to beat.

      • Ian

        What I meant was that we were getting the shots we wanted while forcing the Wizards into the shots we wanted them to take. (10 more midrange shots than the Pacers) Ultimately the Wizards just hit more shots.

        Lance is creative but his decision making is questionable. Hill is no point guard but he is also less likely to try a bad pass at the wrong time. Don’t get me wrong I like Lance I’m just not sure if he’s the guy to run a championship contender.

        • Jack Wright

          I’ll take any given Lance Stephenson pass over any given George Hill pass.