PHILADELPHIA, PA – Another matchup with an Eastern Conference playoff squad on Tuesday. Another impressive win for the Indiana Pacers (40-28).
Myles Turner played well once again (25 points, six rebounds), as Indy held on to secure a 101-98 victory over the Philadelphia 76ers (36-30). The win allows the Blue and Gold to stay in third in the East standings and also gives them the head-to-head postseason tiebreaker (two wins to one) over the sixth place Sixers.
Indiana set the tone early, using a 14-0 run to overcome an early deficit. At the end of the first quarter, the Pacers were in front by ten at 33-23.
Philly responded in period number two, reeling off a 14-4 run to pull within just two points. Indy pushed back to stay in front, though, clutching a 57-53 edge at halftime.
In the third quarter, Philadelphia roared back to tie the score at 71, but Thaddeus Young and the Pacers snatched the lead right back. Young scored seven straight points in the midst of a 9-0 run that ultimately helped the visitors go into the fourth with a 83-79.
Near the end of that third frame, the Blue and Gold saw one of their own go down. Domantas Sabonis hurt his left ankle in a collision with Joel Embiid and required assistance in a trip back to Indiana’s locker room. He did not return.
Even without Sabonis, Indy found a way to win.
The 76ers took advantage of third-string big man Al Jefferson when Turner was hit with fifth foul, trimming their deficit down to three points. The Pacers answered by rattling off five consecutive points, however, to lead 97-89 with 3:18 to play. Philadelphia wouldn’t go down easily, though.
The Sixers were back within three with 46 seconds remaining and following a block by Embiid, Philly eyed a game-tying three. JJ Redick missed, though, and Turner then went to the line and hit two free throws to make it 101-96 with 21.5 seconds to go.
It seemed as if the Pacers had this one won at that point, but not so fast. Embiid threw down a dunk. Victor Oladipo was called for an offensive foul. And the Sixers were given life with 7.6 seconds. Embiid misfired on a tying triple, however, and a jump ball ensued with Oladipo and Dario Saric got tied up. Oladipo won the tip, with Bojan Bogdanovic snagging the ball and tossing it off of Ben Simmons to seal the game with 0.3 ticks left.
Oladipo and Bogdanovic needed that game-sealing sequence to make up for horrid nights on offense.
Oladipo finished with a season-low 11 points, connecting on just four of 21 shot attempts. Bogdanovic walked off of the court with just two points, snapping his streak of 16 straight games scoring in double-figures. He shot just 1-of-11 from the field.
Turner and Young picked up the slack. In addition to Turner’s nice 25-and-six game, Young recorded his sixth double-double of the season with 19 points and 10 boards.
Indiana will get another good test on Thursday when they return to action in Indianapolis. The East-leading Toronto Raptors will be in town, with tip scheduled for 7:00 p.m.