After Paul George was named Eastern Conference Player of the Month for November, an award he earned with a string of otherworldly performances that continued through the first game in December against the Clippers on Wednesday, the Pacers' star reminded us he remains a mere mortal after a rough performance in Portland on Thursday.
Try as he might, and he kept trying throughout the game, PG couldn't get anything going offensively, missing all nine of his three-point attempts. This was the type of game where PG needs to cut his losses from downtown and try to make something happen from the inside, get to the free throw line and find some production if not his rhythm in a different way.
For whatever reason, and the 41 minutes of burn in L.A. the night before didn't help, PG didn't have the fortitude to force the action inside after trying a few times and getting no burst and no calls. Thanks to C.J. Miles and George Hill, the Pacers still had enough offense to get the job done, but no one had the goods to slow down the Blazers late at the other end.
Fatigue reared its ugly head in the effort areas of defense and rebounding, an excuse Frank Vogel doesn't want to hear. Unfortunately, it was a reality in Portland on Thursday night.
Pacers aren't using fatigue as an excuse: "You've got to win no matter what the schedule looks like" - Frank Vogel https://t.co/znoz0T1VtI— FOX Sports Indiana (@FSIndiana) December 4, 2015
This was a classic NBA schedule loss that broke the seal on a sensational stretch of play for the Pacers. Now the team has to make sure this setback doesn't completely derail the early success as they roll into a challenging December schedule.
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Check out the links:
Game Rewind: Pacers 111, Trail Blazers 123 | Indiana Pacers
Trail Blazers show growth during win over Indiana Pacers | OregonLive.com
Pacers, George are all wet in Portland
Lillard, Blazers Pour 123 Points on the Pacers - Blazer's Edge
Paul George Is Back, And So Are The Pacers | FiveThirtyEight
Post-Game Grades: Portland Ends Indiana Pacers Win Streak
Paul George selected as the Eastern Conference's Player of the Month - Indy Cornrows