Despite leading for most of the contest, the Indiana Pacers succumbed to LeBron James and the Los Angeles Lakers in overtime to kick-off their three-game homestand, snapping a two-game win streak, and falling to 8-12 on the season, including 5-3 at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse.
Losing the services of Anthony Davis, who sat this one down with an injury, the Lakers rode the shooting of James, who returned after serving a one-game suspension, and their bench snipers Malik Monk and Wayne Ellington, who combined to shoot seven of 12 from rainbow country as they erased the Pacers’ lead in the fourth quarter before taking control in the closing minutes.
Averting a complete meltdown despite leading by as much as 12, Chris Duarte played hero for Indiana in regulation, sinking an off-balance three-pointer to send the game to overtime, where the Pacers eventually failed to generate much offense and LBJ suddenly got hot from downtown to pull away.
Malcolm Brogdon led the Blue and Gold in scoring, tallying 28 points and sinking a season-high five three-pointers. Duarte, even in a relative off night, finished with 17 markers while Justin Holiday continued his recent surge, ending the game with 16. James paced LA, scoring a game-high 39 points, while Russell Westbrook chipped in 20.
As the Indiana Pacers (and the league) take a day off for Thanksgiving before another meeting with the Toronto Raptors, here are player grades from their narrow loss at home to the Los Angeles Lakers.