Indiana Pacers: Player grades from bounce back win over the New Orleans Pelicans

Indiana Pacers, Domantas Sabonis - Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
Indiana Pacers, Domantas Sabonis - Credit: Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports /
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By giving the Indiana Pacers starters an early benching in their loss to the Charlotte Hornets the night before, coach Rick Carlisle‘s message was certainly sent across, with the opening group leading the Blue and Gold to a wire-to-wire victory over the visiting New Orleans Pelicans to improve to 7-11 on the season.

94. 69. 111. 100. Final

The Pacers never trailed in the game right from the opening tip, leading by as much as 32 before the team pulled the plug on the starters and inserted the reserves late in the third frame. After being outplayed in every sense of the word against the Hornets, the starters collaborated for 69 points, badly outscoring the Pelicans’ first unit which only mustered 46 markers combined.

Carlisle’s emphasis on ball movement after putrid offensive showings in the past three games finally materialized, with the Blue and Gold racking up 28 assists, their highest tally since their win against the San Antonio Spurs in the opening game of November. Overall, the Pacers shot 46.2 percent from the field against the Pelicans’ 39.8 percent, marking only the second time in four games that the team cracked league average in that area.

Domantas Sabonis returned to form at home, leading Indiana with 20 points, 10 rebounds, and six assists. Justin Holiday added 17 while Malcolm Brogdon chipped in 16 of his sown in a winning cause. On the other hand, Jonas Valanciunas was a lone wolf for New Orleans, finishing with a team-high 19 points.

As the Indiana Pacers gear up for a brief road game in Chicago, here are the player grades from their bounce back win at the Fieldhouse over the New Orleans Pelicans.