Frank Vogel can put together a game plan and when his team shows up with energy and executes the plan, apparently the names on the back of the jersey don't matter -- the Pacers will have a chance to win.
Once again, the Pacers put forth a strong effort on the road to pull off an improbable 111-100 win over the Dallas Mavericks on Monday. This without Roy Hibbert, who joined David West, George Hill, C.J. Watson and Paul George in street clothes, against the league's top team at attacking the rim.
Instead the Pacers took the attack to the Mavs with a fearless offensive effort that saw seven different guys make at least one of the team's 13 three-pointers which helped deliver the best offensive game of the year. They also kept the Mavs at bay, allowing Tyson Chandler, Brandan Wright and friends to match their league average around the rim (22-33, 66.7% inside 5 feet, yes, their average), but not absolutely destroy the Pacers in the process.
Most impressive was how the Mavs came out after trailing 55-50 at the half and kicked up the intensity, surely expecting to push past the Pacers and onto their 11th win in 15 tries. Instead, the Pacers pushed back and never relented the lead. Scola, Mahinmi and of course Donald Sloan answered when the lead was down to one point in the third quarter, but essentially everyone else on the roster stepped up with a big shot at some point in the second half, which had to leave the Mavs dumbfounded following the game.
The confidence grew as the game went on and at winning time, the Pacers made all of the plays. The effort obviously please Vogel who made the point after the game, that planning to win is one thing, but working the plan is another.
"What I'm most impressed with our guys tonight is our offensive confidence," Vogel said via Pacers.com. "We keep talking about ‘we've got to execute,' OK, but you you've got to have confidence to make big shots, and our guys made big shot after big shot most of the night and I'm real proud of all of them."
Good times as the Pacers move on to San Antonio to play the Spurs on Wednesday. Wonder if Coach Pop will rest his starters, you know, just to even things out? Maybe not, after watching tape of the Pacers latest W.
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