DETROIT, MI – It is only the day after Christmas, but the Indiana Pacers (19-15) dropped a ballgame with potential key playoff implications.
In a clash that determined a playoff tiebreaker, the Detroit Pistons (19-14) jumped out to a 23-point first half lead and never looked back. Detroit cruised to a 107-83 win, giving them wins in three of their four matchups with Indy this season.
The Blue and Gold’s 83 points goes down as a season-low.
The Pistons dominated from the beginning, building a sizable lead quickly. Tobias Harris was scorching hot, nailing his first six three-point attempts on his way to 21 points scored in the first quarter alone. Harris finished with a game-high 30.
By the time the buzzer sounded at the end of one, Detroit led 40-19.
Indiana has done a good job of erasing big leads so far this year and it looked for a second like they may be able to do it again on Tuesday.
Indy’s bench went on a 11-0 run in the second quarter, pulling the visitors within single digits, but it wouldn’t be enough. Detroit closed the half strong, leaving them with a 13-point halftime lead.
The Pacers just didn’t have it going on offense in this one and thus never made a serious run in the second half.
Detroit outscored Indy in both the third and fourth quarters. The Pistons were three points better in the third and eight better in the fourth, resulting in a comfortable 24-point margin of victory.
Victor Oladipo led the Blue and Gold in scoring like most nights, but it was not a usual impressive showing. Oladipo scored just 13 points, while three of his teammates posted ten points each.
Rebounding hurt the Pacers like it usually does when going up against a big man like Detroit’s Andre Drummond. The Pistons held the edge on the glass, 46-26, with Drummond alone pulling down a whopping 18 boards.
It will be a quick turnaround for Indiana, who will be back in action on Wednesday in the second half of a back-to-back. The Pacers will be back home, however, hosting the Dallas Mavericks at 7:00 p.m.