Pacers Links: Pacers depth steps up to shine against Bulls

Pat Lovell-USA TODAY Sports

The Pacers had so many players step up on Wednesday that they simply overwhelmed the Bulls when it was time to win in the fourth quarter.

The Indiana Pacers played like champs to run their record to 5-0 after disposing of the Chicago Bulls on Wednesday night. The mellow locker room following the win over their division rival revealed they are winning like champs, too.

On to the next one.

But this was a big win for the Pacers, not only to beat the Bulls and keep them searching for early-season answers, but to do so on a nationally televised game, to make sure every nook and cranny of the NBA is fully aware of what is going on at the Fieldhouse.

It's not a fun place to visit.

Yes, Paul George and Lance Stephenson are making this engine hum and Roy Hibbert is the cornerstone of a devastating defense, but a couple of other key components came up big, showing they will be ready to roll in big games.

Both David West and Luis Scola struggled at times in the first four wins while trying to find ways other than scoring to help the Pacers win. On Wednesday, the PF tandem answered the bell under the bright lights with a combined 29 points, 16 rebounds and five steals, including a steal by Scola that sparked the big fourth quarter after the big fella's finger-roll finish at the other end.

Along with the bigs, the reserve point guard tandem of C.J. Watson and Donald Sloan wiped the hard drive clean of any past images with D.J. Augustin and Ben Hansbrough on the floor. Sloan has ranged between decent and bad in his early appearances, but when called on to expand his role on Wednesday he was more than up for the task. As for Watson, he simply looked as if he was brought in solely to deal with Derrick Rose. Huge effort in George Hill's absence.

Speaking of Augustin, he's getting minimal minutes off the bench for a talented Toronto Raptors teams that visits the Fieldhouse tomorrow night. On to the next one.

Check out the links:

Bulls at Pacers - Box score

Game Rewind: Pacers 97, Bulls 80 | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Pacers send early message to Bulls - 1070 The Fan

Bob Kravitz: Indiana Pacers look like a true title contender | Indianapolis Star | indystar.com

Bulls vs. Pacers final score: Indiana uses huge 4th quarter to beat down Chicago, 97-80 - Blog a Bull

MVP? Pacers’ George belongs in discussion - 1070 The Fan

Division rivals? Yes. Respect? Of course. But only fans want to call the Pacers and Bulls rivals (for now) | Indianapolis Star | indystar.com

Perfect Pacers pull away from Bulls for 97-80 win - AP

West, Scola Forming Lethal Tandem | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Watson, Sloan Deliver When Given Chance | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Daily Dime: Pacers on unbeaten roll - ESPN

Pacers stifle Bulls, start 5-0 for 1st time in NBA - 1070 The Fan

Pacers’ George: Bulls’ Success Is ‘Jordan Era,’ This One Is Ours " Hang Time Blog with Sekou Smith | NBA.com

The Pacers’ Defense Has Been Astounding | 8 Points, 9 Seconds

Pacers' Lance Stephenson an X-factor vs. Bulls | CSN Chicago

Turnovers doom Bulls late in loss to Pacers | CSN Chicago

Bulls' offense still struggling down stretch - Chicago Bulls Blog - ESPN Chicago

Wednesday's Top 10 with Pacers D at the top | NBA.com

NBA scores: Pacers roll past Bulls, Magic stun Clippers - SBNation.com

Pacers stifle Bulls, start 5-0 for 1st time in NBA - 1070 The Fan

Nightly Grades: The Pacers are beasts of the East - CBSSports.com

Pistons' Andre Drummond has plenty of fight in him | The Detroit News

Brad Stevens gets first Boston Celtics win over former protege Gordon Hayward - Celtics Blog

Pacers Name Bill Benner Senior Vice President | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

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