The Indiana Pacers had plenty to complain about after the game, but they only have themselves to blame for eventually losing a double-digit lead and then the game to the Portland Trail Blazers, 107-105.
Yes, the Pacers were playing on a back-to-back without their All-Star. Then they lost Travis Diener who appeared played well before leaving with some chest injury. The Blazers were well rested and at home with a deeper bench to rely on. Then down the stretch their All-Star, Brandon Roy, was able to make plays, drawing key fouls that would make the difference.
While the Pacers played extremely well most of the night and didn't fade late when the Blazers tried to put the game away, the lapse in play to begin the fourth quarter included enough head-shaking plays to be THE turning point of the game.
The Blazers used a 14-2 run amidst a collection of turnovers, missed bunnies and plain poor shots by the Pacers, which put the Blazers up four with just over six minutes to go. Little things lead to a lapse in execution which always punishes the Pacers in these tight losses. They also make any complaints about late calls worthless because the game was in the hands of the Pacers and they turned it over. Once you lose control of the game, anything can happen. Tonight, that was a gut-wrenching loss.
Check out the box score, some great individual efforts. Simply too late for me to elaborate now. Quisy was sweet early and late. T.J. big most of the night, although 22 shots is too many for his 24 points. Hibbert showed some flashes. Jack was solid, again. Just needed one more play.