Good thing Danny Granger woke up in time for the fourth quarter last night. After taking some medicine to get through a sleepless night, Granger didn't feel like himself early in the game and with two points in the first half and just two more in the third quarter, he wasn't exactly playing like himself either.
"It had me groggy all day and into tonight," Granger said after the game. "I was a little late and slow on transition plays and just a bit slow overall. It almost cost us but we were able to pull out the fourth quarter and get this done."
It was a strange game when you consider the Indiana Pacers didn't appear to be playing real well early but Darren Collison and Roy Hibbert were a combined 13 for 16 from the floor in the first half to combine for 29 points and the Pacers were rolling. Collison was attacking the Utah Jazz like he had been caged up during the two off days.
"Darren was coast to coast and kept us moving the entire game," Hibbert said. "Teams make runs at you, which we knew they would. But we were able to fight them off and finish what we started."
The Pacers needed all of that offense, which was strong for around 40 of the 48 minutes, because they were struggling in other areas. The Pacers' bench was outscored 36-24 and Utah had a 43-37 rebound advantage which are often indicative of a losing effort. But only eight turnovers and Danny Granger catching fire late made the difference.
This was the type of game the Pacers often blew in the past few years. If Granger was unable to close it out, there was little help to step up. That allowed teams to focus on Granger, thus making it harder for him to get it done. Against the Jazz, Granger caught fire and found his spots and when the defense found him he found his teammates, incluing a key "hockey assist" via Darren Collison for a key 3-ball by Paul George.
"We're so deep and have so many weapons," Granger said. "Darren was really going tonight and he shouldered the load and I had a bad night up to that point, then I finally got it going. We have so many ways to attack you, it's hard to beat us."
Check out the links after the jump.
- Box score: Pacers 104, Jazz 99
- PACERS: Rewind: Pacers vs. Jazz 120207
- Pacers squander 21-point lead but find balance, defeat Jazz | The Indianapolis Star | indystar.com
- Utah Jazz dig a hole, then pay price in 104-99 loss to Indiana Pacers | The Salt Lake Tribune
- Granger leads Pacers past Jazz 104-99 - NBA -AP
- Utah Jazz get going too late in road loss to Pacers | Deseret News
- Another game, another game with a lot of empty seats for the Pacers | Pacers Insider | The Indianapolis Star | IndyStar.com
- Brownsburg native Gordon Hayward finds himself in the spotlight quickly for the rebuilding Utah Jazz. - fox59.com
- Post-Game Grades: Pacers Hold on to Beat Utah, Perhaps Showing Us What Their DNA Is Made Of | Eight Points, Nine Seconds
- All that Jazz: Hayward making an impact in Utah | The Indianapolis Star | indystar.com
- Hayward and Tinsley enjoy a hoosier moment
- Jazz notes: Utah keeps veteran guard Jamaal Tinsley | The Salt Lake Tribune
- Report Card: Pacers survive, Pierce passes Bird - CBSSports.com
- The Revenge Of The Sixth Man: Why They're More Valuable Than Ever In Today's NBA - SBNation.com