The Indiana Pacers appeared to have gotten momentum in their favor early in the third quarter against the Milwaukee Bucks, hitting four three pointers to erase a 10-point Milwaukee lead to go up 63-61. But the Bucks showed more fight than Indiana, scoring seven straight as a response en route to a 30-point third quarter that once again put Indiana down double figures.
Behind a huge boost of defensive energy from Solomon Hill and a scoring explosion from Paul George, the Pacers staged a furious comeback in the fourth, cutting a 16-point Milwaukee lead down to _, but misses from three late kept Indiana from getting over the hump.
The Pacers defense was a step slow all night and the speed and athleticism of the Bucks made Indiana pay for it. Turnovers were a problem for the Pacers, with 20 Indiana miscues leading to 35 Milwaukee points, a gulf of an advantage for Milwaukee, where Indiana could only muster 16 points off of 17 Milwaukee turnovers, most of that coming in the third quarter. The Bucks shot 58% in the game, 61% through the third.
Paul George exploded in the fourth quarter with 17 points, helping Indiana back in the game. But while he finished with 31 points, he was limited in how much he could make an impact on the offensive end through the first three quarters. George shot 8-13 with five threes. George did have four turnovers, which wasn't even most among the starters, that "honor" going to Monta Ellis, who had eight to go with 13 points.
Lavoy Allen played one of his best games, however, filing in well for a lack of Jordan Hill and Ian Mahinmi, scoring 14 points on 7-8 shooting. Myles Turner scored eight in his second game back, getting to the line four times, and pulling in nine rebounds. C.J. Miles returned to action, having stretches of quality play and rust, scoring 19, hitting five three pointers. George Hill had three of his own from deep, scoring 15.
Indiana continues their back-to-back struggles and Milwaukee were able to run the Pacers' transition defense into the ground. The loss is their second in three at home, dropping them to seventh in the East, and pitting them against the Detroit Pistons at home on Saturday to keep the Pacers from losing their third straight game.