As a final tune-up before the regular season, the Indiana Pacers looked in some ways their most fluid, though the Charlotte Hornets were hardly at full strength for tonight's finale. What the Pacers did do well tonight was moving the ball, assisting on 23 of their 37 shots and making the transition game work, outscoring Charlotte 29-6 in fast break points.
Those two positives helped guide Indiana to the win, but the most rewarding part of tonight's action was seeing Indiana's role players hopefully get themselves kickstarted as the regular season sits a week away. Chase Budinger entered tonight's game averaging 3.3 points and shooting 23% from the floor, but used defense to open up transition opportunities, finding a rhythm and scoring 17 points on 7-11 shooting, including three three pointers.
C.J. Miles led all scorers tonight with 20 points, hitting three triples of his own, but finding his way to the line five times. Miles is nothing if not streaky, but after a woeful performance against the Bulls, it was nice to see something on this end of the spectrum. Rodney Stuckey also bowled his way to 10 points, helping Indiana's bench (though Miles did start) to a solid night against the shortened Charlotte bench.
Myles Turner also played exceptionally well on the defensive end with five blocks as part of his seven point, eight rebound, five block night. Lavoy Allen off the bench gave Indiana a near double double of eight points and 10 rebounds. Paul George offered up some highlight plays as part of his 12 points in 23 minutes, pulling in six boards and dishing four assists on a night he and the team were moving the ball well.
Indiana wrapped up preseason play at 5-2, but it's yet to see what that ultimately means as the Pacers now officially sit at 0-0, readying themselves for a regular season opener on October 28th against the Toronto Raptors. Before that, the Pacers will whittle down the roster to 15 players on Monday, though there are unlikely to be any real surprises as to who will or won't make the team regarding players like Glenn Robinson III and Shayne Whittington.