My buddy used his hook-up to score us tickets 5 rows behind the Pacers bench. NBA basketball will never be the same for me again! I normally hate players and spectators yelling "AND 1" after a basket, but there I was being "that guy" after Hill made that steal and bucket with 1.8 left. The crowd was going crazy during the last 22 seconds and became silent after that play. I'm sure at that point I made myself heard amongst the Warrior fans in our section!
Some of my thoughts and observations after the jump.
Hill does not seem confident running the offense. That will come as no surprise to those on this board, but his demeanor and communication on offense is one of hesitance. He seemed shy calling out plays, never did he yell out the play as he brought up the ball. Hopefully time with the team helps his comfort level.
DG was on fire last night. It was good to see him shoot the ball well. His confidence level was high, you could see that in his eyes as he walked to the bench. It's nice to play teams who don't play defense.
Hibbert is tall. Like REALLY tall. Yup.
D Jones seems to be the popular guy on the bench. For whatever reason, he and Dorell Wright were yappin at each other. At one point during a free throw, Wright almost turned the entire way around and faced Jones, who was sitting on the bench. Dahntay then kept yappin as Granger beat Wright for a backdoor layup and long 2 on back-to-back possessions. The bench was laughing with Jones during that exchange.
Lance, TBrough, Dahntay, and Price paid little attention to the team during the timeouts. They all found people to look at and laugh at in the stands. Not that it was unprofessional or anything, just gave me the sense that the NBA season is a long season and they have to entertain themselves. The flip side is that the team could have used a little more tenacity at times...
Monta Ellis is a beast. Hill and PG played great defense on him and forced him to take shots they wanted him to take. He just hit all those shots. Everyone in that stadium (including me) knew he was gonna hit the game winner. Thank you George Hill for those years in youth soccer.
This was a great game to be at and a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see it from great seats. There were seldom occasions where I felt the Pacers were beating themselves. They still have a long ways to go to play to their potential, but at least did not have a Sacramento-type of let down that has been so maddening for us fans the last few years.