Pacers sputter without Oladipo, fall to Mavs for 2nd straight loss


The Pacers started the game off strong (for once), but couldn’t find any 2nd half offense as Rick Carlisle’s Mavs smothered them to the tune only 40 2nd half points.

98. 79. 94. 100. Final

The Pacers started well, and finished the first half shooting 58% from the field and 50% from deep en route to a narrow 1 point lead. However, when the shooting cooled off, the team couldn’t compensate.

Without Oladipo, the squad seemed to have no option in the half court, especially in the 2nd half. Myles Turner was unable to capitalize on the Mavs switching smalls on him, and no one was able to really provide a consistent scoring option once Dallas had a set defense.

While 48% from the field and 40% from 3 are both reasonable numbers, the roster finished with 16 turnovers to the Mavericks’ 9. Lance Stephenson played an incredibly high effort game, setting a career high in rebounds and notching his first double double since 2015-16, but led the team with 5 turnovers and had one that cost the Pacers a chance to take the lead with less than a minute left on the clock. Every Pacer but Joe Young had a turnover, and 5 players had at least 2.

More from 8 Points, 9 Seconds

The Good: The Pacers shot the ball well, when they got their shots up. No one player shot poorly, and everyone who took a 3 made one outside of CoJo.

The Bad: The half court offense. The Mavs switched any and everyone onto Myles Turners during Nate McMillan’s pick and rolls with impunity, and he couldn’t make anyone pay for it.

MVP: Lance, I guess? Led the Pacers in scoring and rebounding, and saved the game with an offensive rebound and a layup, right before letting it slip through his fingers with a wild turnover.

LVP: Nate McMillan. I understand the Mavericks love the 2 point guard lineups, but CoJo was not playing particularly well, and he seems to make the wrong call between Bojan Bogdanovic and Thad Young on several occasions. He couldn’t coax anything out the offense, and made some odd substitution patterns.

X-Factor: Turnovers. The guys handed the ball away far too many times, and it cost them dearly in the end. 7 more turnovers than the 10 win Mavericks in a 4 point loss hurts.

B-. 16 points, 6 rebounds, 2 steals, 2 blocks. Need to see more shots from him, especially if he’s matched up with Dirk Nowitzki. C. Indiana Pacers. MYLES TURNER

C+. 11 points, 3 assists, 2 steals, only 1 rebound. Was on the bench for much of crunch time as Nate McMillan played 2 point guards with Bojan as the nominal 4. PF. Indiana Pacers. THADDEUS YOUNG

13 points on 5-13 shooting. Got roasted on both ends by Devin Harris. Not a memorable night for Bojan. SF. Indiana Pacers. BOJAN BOGDANOVIC. D+

B-. 16 points, 7 assists, 5-13 from the field. Had a nice run in the 3rd, but didn’t look great throughout. Struggled to balance when to attack for his own offense and when to distribute, and took some suboptimal looks.. PG. Indiana Pacers. DARREN COLLISON

PF/C. Indiana Pacers. DOMANTAS SABONIS. B. 6 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, a steal and a block. The Pacers probably ultimately need to get a bit more scoring out of him, but he had impact out there

Indiana Pacers. LANCE STEPHENSON. A-. Started in place of Victor Oladipo for the 2nd time this year. Led the team in minutes (36), snagged a career high 15 rebounds to go with 16 points, 5 assists, and 5 turnovers. Had the biggest rebound – and turnover – of the game. Lance giveth, Lance taketh away. Shot well, hit 40% of his 3’s. Pacers can’t reasonably expect any more. SG

10 points, 6 assists, team worst -13. He played starters minutes (30) against Rick Carlisle’s 2 point guard sets, but didn’t look particularly good during any of it. PG. Indiana Pacers. CORY JOSEPH. C

B-. 6 points on 2-2 shooting in 13 minutes. Did nothing else, but looked like an NBA player. He was the only Pacer that didn’t have a turnover tonight. PG. Indiana Pacers. JOE YOUNG

Indiana Pacers. ALEX POYTHRESS. D. Only played 2 minutes. Had 1 offensive rebound, 2 fouls, and a turnover. Was a team worst -8. He looks like an NBA player out there, and it looked like he was doing helpful things. Nothing’s translating yet though. SF

Next: Victor Oladipo to All Stars or we riot

The Pacers face off at the Chicago Bulls next on 12/29 at 8:00 PM.