In the first quarter, it looked like the Cats could hang around and make things interesting, but the Pacers' barrage of threes helped them slowly pull away and then hold on in the end. Roy Hibbert scored 13 points and pulled down 14 rebounds, and Danny Granger torched the Cats late.
Game thread comment, lowlights, and highlights after the jump.
GAME THREAD COMMENT
MMA_PITBULL -- You would think a team built on defense and so limited offensively would guard 3 point shots.
-- The Cats simply couldn't shoot free throws tonight, ending at 17-25. Gerald Wallace was the main offender, shooting 5-9 from the stripe. At the least, making those shots could have changed the dynamic of the game in crunch time. (Charlotte was actually better than Indiana; they shot 11-18.)
-- Dominic McGuire would be a likable, palatable, bench player if he shot rarely, just to show the opposition that he might. But he doesn't seem to know who he is, that he's a jaw-droppingly awful offensive player. Would his ego take a hit if he saw his defender sagging into the paint, six feet off him, and he didn't shoot? Because he shouldn't.
That McGuire shot 4-13 from the field is frustrating as hell (10 points), especially since that's what he's done his entire career and it was entirely expected, but that he was allowed to stay in the game long enough to get that many misses is the amazing part.
-- Stephen Jackson shot 7-17 for 15 points, to go with 8 assists and 4 steals. Unfortunately, he ends up in the Bad category because he turned it over 7 times, which is kind of crazy for a guy who finishes plays more than he attempts to initiate them.
-- The Cats shot 3-17 from three, and allowed the Pacers to shoot 13-31 from three (one of the Cats' threes was a last-second garbage three for Crash). That's a huge swing (#obvious). Intuition and empirical evidence match up: shots at the rim are the most valuable shot in the game, followed by three pointers. On average in the NBA, teams shoot .630 at the rim, and they have an eFG% of .541 on threes. Teams ignore threes at their own peril.
-- I guess we're reaching deep into our bench depth for tomorrow's game at home against the Boston Celitcs, because Wallace played 37 minutes, Boris Diaw played 38, and Jackson played 41.
-- Nazr Mohammed played a very solid game. In his 20 minutes, he shot 5-6 for 13 points. While he had only 3 rebounds, he also got 5 blocks.
-- Gerald Wallace recovered from a rough first half to finish the game strong, with 26 points on 22 attempts, and 13 rebounds.