The long struggle for the Indiana Pacers against the Atlanta Hawks in Georgia didn't end tonight, with the Hawks using a pair of big runs to cruise to a comfortable win over Indiana. A 16-0 run opened action for the Hawks, who jumped up 16-2. Three point shooting by the Hawks, coupled with a string of turnovers by the Pacers helped the Hawks to a 52-38 halftime lead.
In the third, the Pacers managed to trim the lead to eight at 59-51, but at that point, the Hawks exploded, dropping seven threes in the final seven minutes of the third as part of a 30-4 run to close the third, putting the Pacers firmly in the loss column. The Hawks hit 13 three pointers through the first three quarters, 15 on the night, while Indiana was just 3-15 in the same stretch.
The Pacers didn't help their case much with a bad night offensively. Indiana clanked their way to 37.9% shooting, north from their first three quarters effort, turning it over with frequency, allowing the Hawks an extra 17 points off of 16 Indiana turnovers, a field the Pacers actually tied Atlanta with, not as if it mattered in the end. The Pacers, who entered 1-7 on second night of back-to-backs on the road looked the part, especially adding in their continued struggles in Atlanta, giving very little to look back on.
Even the individual efforts were lacking. Myles Turner had 19 to lead the Pacers, making some good plays in the first half and continuing that in garbage time. Monta Ellis was the second Pacer to reach double figures, having a nice run early in the third to score 10 points. The one silver lining in the loss is extra rest time for Rodney Stuckey, who left action early with a sore right foot, and George Hill, who was clearly labored with a bad toe.
Indiana loses a game they could've really used when it comes to moving up in the standings, but they'll still have a chance to continue their overall positive play when they play their next eight of nine at home, starting with the Boston Celtics on Tuesday.