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Pacers 86, Celtics 85: Paul George Finishes Pacers Comeback

Paul George had a rough game. As the Pacers worked desperately to finish their 27-point comeback, he looked to take control with just under a minute to go and the Pacers down two. He had his pocket picked and committed an immediate foul. On the next possession, he drove in for an easy layup to put the tem back within two. Defensively, George’s name came yet again, making a clutch steal to give the Pacers the ball with 8.7 seconds left.

As Indiana inbounded, George was called for the final play, despite being 3-15 at that point. George drives baseline, reverse layup, it’s good! And the foul! At the line, he iced it to bring the Pacers a victory, and it was all about Paul George down the stretch.

The first round pick ended up being the hero, but it was a tremendous fourth quarter effort for the Pacers. Josh McRoberts sat out and Lance Stephenson was lost to a bruised thigh at the end of the first quarter, taking away the team’s two most efficient offensive threats. At that point, the Pacers looked gassed, and the Celtics, led by Luke Harangody, held all the cards. The Pacers simply looked confused on both ends.

Magnum Rolle had a huge game, stepping up his offensive abilities when the team had no answers, dropping an efficient 19 points with 11 rebounds. Even though George gets the glory, Rolle was the player of the game. He was the closest thing to all day consistency the team had, despite the monster fourth quarter.

After the jump, more on George and Rolle as well as the ups and downs of the rest of the roster:

  • George finished 4-16 from the field, but lived up to his billing from the free throw line, where he finished a perfect 9-9.
  • Most of the game, George not only was off his shot, but didn't look very good or efficient offensively. He committed five turnovers and took some bad shots. Credit to him for staying involved, even if he struggled at every offensive aspect not free throws.
  • I was pleasantly surprised by Rolle's offensive game. I wasn't sure much was there, but his 19 points were legit. Just as were his eleven rebounds. Really had a number of strong rebounds, keeping possessions alive.
  • Lance Stephenson left the game towards the end of the first quarter. He remained on the bench, a positive, and iced down the rest of the game. Not sure what kind of severity it holds, but it doesn't appear to be too bad. No reason to risk it with Stephenson in the Summer League.
  • Another game, another dismal shooting effort. The team shot 37% overall, but only 5-24 deep. Yet they continued to shoot. This is a philosophy...
  • The Pacers forced 23 turnovers, most of those coming in the second half, even into the fourth quarter. The Celtics simply had no answer for the Pacers full court trap, giving Indiana some much needed life.
  • Bryce Taylor and Marcus Landry had nice games for the Pacers in getting them back into it, each doing their part to contribute to the comeback.
  • Marcus Williams was disappointing tonight. Given his D-League numbers, it was disappointing he didn't step up offensively when the team desperately needed an answer late in the first half. It was tailor made for him to step up and make an impression, and he, like the team, left their shots short.
  • Luke Harangody finished with 16 points and 7 rebounds, as the local product continues to shine for Boston.
  • Chris Kramer also had some play, and had a very nice coast to coast layup.
  • Lastly, the Pacers/Celtics box score here:
Wake up early tomorrow and enjoy the Pacers closing out their summer league season at 8 a.m. EST. Yes, that is 8 a.m. And no, the game is not taking place in Europe. We saw some tired legs today, we must be curious how tired the legs will be tomorrow. May not be a pretty one, but maybe the adrenaline from tonight can push them tomorrow morning.