Post-Game Grades: Pacers Got Hot Late, But Can’t Complete Comeback vs. Heat


The Good: The good? Ha. The good is that the Indiana Pacers will have a great draft pick this Summer if things don’t drastically improve. Is it time to start looking at mock drafts already? Montrezl Harrell, Frank Komisky, Myles Turner, Stanley Johnson, and Willie Cauley-Stein are all looking like legitimate potential draft picks right now and, honestly, I wouldn’t mind seeing any of those guys in the blue and gold next year. In all seriousness, it was a great to see the Pacers make a large comeback but just completely disheartening to watch them lose yet another close game.

The Bad: There was a lot of bad. 18 turnovers (including 10 in the first 15 minutes). 20% from behind the arch. Miami just outplayed the Pacers and controlled the game for the most part. I loved the Pacers battling back from a 21-point deficit, but it was all for nothing. It turned out to be just another close game that Indiana couldn’t turn into a W. Same old story.

MVP: Chris Bosh looked great tonight. He was strong and decisive with the ball, and put up some solid numbers. He has been playing excellent ball this season, really proving that he was severely underappreciated and underused over the past few seasons. I saw a couple of guys try to check Bosh this evening, but nobody on the Pacers roster had any chance of stopping his versatility. The same thing could be said about Luol Deng.

LVP: Roy Hibbert stunk it up tonight. He had just 4 points and 2 rebounds on top of getting into foul trouble early. I mean, he fouled Chris Bosh on the first possession of the game and it was all downhill from there. I’ve seen Roy play like an All-Star, but tonight he just looked like he had no business on an NBA roster.

X Factor: The Miami Heat ran their offense and passed the ball extremely well tonight. It was impressive to watch them run sets to perfection with multiple “extra passes” to go from good shot attempts to great shot attempts. I would say their ball movement was the X-Factor in the Miami Heat win tonight. The Indiana Pacers defense was constantly two steps behind and just couldn’t catch up.

Indiana Pacers87FinalRecap | Box Score89Miami Heat
David West, PF 33 MIN | 5-14 FG | 2-2 FT | 9 REB | 2 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 5 TO | 12 PTS | -2 +/-D. West was reliable as always tonight. He didn’t put up spectacular numbers, but played some solid ball when Hibbert was basically absent. West turned the ball over way too many times tonight, but I can let them slide because most of his TOs come from trying to make something happen for the team. Plus he made some plays late.
Solomon Hill, SF 26 MIN | 2-9 FG | 0-1 FT | 2 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 1 BLK | 1 TO | 4 PTS | -8 +/-Solomon Hill’s slump continues. He barely shot the rock ronight and had trouble on D, guarding both Wade and Deng throughout the game. Solo just seems to be playing tentative, when the Pacers need him to be aggressive every night.
Roy Hibbert, C 18 MIN | 1-4 FG | 2-2 FT | 2 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 3 TO | 4 PTS | -9 +/-Big Roy had a whopping 4 points, 2 rebounds tonight in 18 minutes. He fought foul trouble early and it became a reoccurring issue during the entire game. He offered very little value to the Pacers tonight, unfortunately.
C.J. Watson, PG 27 MIN | 3-6 FG | 5-6 FT | 4 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | -13 +/-Come on, CJ! You’re one of the worst teams in the league, playing in your rival’s arena with a chance to hit a game-winner and instead you go for the tie? And miss it? What?! You have to go for the win. You have to get a W by any means necessary. Other than that, CJ Watson was better tonight than he has been in a few games.
C.J. Miles, SG 7 MIN | 3-6 FG | 1-1 FT | 0 REB | 1 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 8 PTS | -6 +/-After starting off hot, Miles injured his groin and did not return to the game. He gave 7 quality minutes, with 8 points on 3-6 shooting but just can’t keep the injury bug away this year.
Luis Scola, PF 15 MIN | 5-8 FG | 4-4 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 0 STL | 0 BLK | 1 TO | 14 PTS | 0 +/-Scola came off the bench to add 14 points tonight, helping the Pacers climb back into the game during the second half. He was the Pacers leading scorer of the night, but it just wasn’t enough to help the Pacers pull off the upset in Miami. Great game from Luis, though.
Damjan Rudez, SF 20 MIN | 0-4 FG | 0-0 FT | 0 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 0 PTS | +4 +/-Rudez didn’t have much to offer tonight. He played 19 minutes tonight but couldn’t get anything going on offense. Not a good showing for Damo.
Ian Mahinmi, C 30 MIN | 3-3 FG | 2-2 FT | 7 REB | 0 AST | 2 STL | 2 BLK | 2 TO | 8 PTS | +6 +/-While Hibbert was pouting on the bench, Ian was on the court for 30 minutes and delivered a nice defensive performance. Mahinmi grabbed 7 boards to go with his 8 points and helped the Pacers plug the lane during Hibbert’s absence.
George Hill, PG 20 MIN | 5-10 FG | 3-4 FT | 0 REB | 2 AST | 1 STL | 0 BLK | 0 TO | 13 PTS | +14 +/-It was great to see George Hill back on the floor after battling with injuries lately. He was supposed to go for about 10 minutes tonight, but ended up playing 20 minutes because of how effective the offense was when he was on the court. He put up 13 points on 5-10 shooting in his first game back and I’ll take that every time.
Rodney Stuckey, PG 34 MIN | 4-11 FG | 1-1 FT | 2 REB | 3 AST | 2 STL | 0 BLK | 2 TO | 9 PTS | +3 +/-While Stuckey didn’t shoot the ball too well, he was very important to the Pacers big comeback tonight. His tenacity and aggressive play is exactly what the Pacers needed when the game was starting to get ugly.
Frank Vogel
Frank kept the guys engaged even when the game was ugly. He made great subs, played around with the lineups and never let his guys quit. Gotta respect that. Can’t complain with Vogel’s performance tonight.