INDIANAPOLIS — Just a few days removed from an embarrassing performance overseas, the Indiana Pacers got back to their winning ways Monday evening, defeating the visiting New Orleans Pelicans at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, 98-95.
The Pacers, who jumped out to a 32-18 lead after the first quarter, found themselves clawing down the stretch to stay in front after failing to convert on several free throws down the stretch, which could’ve put the game away earlier.
Paul George led all scorers with 19 points, while Myles Turner (18 points, 12 rebounds) and Jeff Teague (17 points, 10 assists) each added double-double performances to avoid a second-straight loss.
Indiana watched their early lead slip away during the second quarter as New Orleans began to make shots against the second unit. While all five Pacers starters carried a positive +/-, only Kevin Seraphin (+2) managed to so off the bench. This coming from a bench that had been very productive during the recent winning streak.
The Pelicans managed to cut the Indiana lead to 54-52 at halftime, powered by 12-of-19 shooting in the frame. The third quarter began in see-saw fashion, until New Orleans superstar forward Anthony Davis left the game with an injury after a midair collision with Turner. Davis was unable to return to the game and the Pelicans were never able to take the lead.
The Pelicans tied the game with just over four minutes remaining and the teams traded baskets until a Pelican dunk cut the Indiana lead to one. Myles Turner drew a foul on the ensuing possession, but converted on just one of the two free throws.
New Orleans was unable to convert on the other end, but Glenn Robinson III incredibly missed both free throws. The Pelicans once again missed a shot with four seconds left, but Turner again failed to put the game out of reach, going 1-of-2 at the line. New Orleans missed a game-tying three to seal with victory for Indiana.
The Pacers begin a three game road trip on the west coast Wednesday against the Sacramento Kings.
Austin Miller is the Indiana Pacers beat reporter for the Indiana Sports Report and student at Butler University and is recognized as an accredited member of the media and has full media access. Follow @MillerTimeXII and the @IndySportsRep on Twitter for Pacers coverage all season long.
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