Offense was not a problem for the Pacers from the tip, as they swapped buckets with the Cavs throughout much of the first half before taking a five-point lead to halftime — a lead they would never relinquish.
But that doesn’t mean the W came easy. The Cavs kept things within two possessions until an early fourth quarter burst by the Pacers pushed the lead to double digits. Nate McMillan had to juggle his normal rotation after holding out Tyreke Evans. Instead of filling all of Evans’ minutes with Edmond Sumner or other bench players, McMillan primarily relied on eight players to get things done.
The lineup in the key stretch of the fourth quarter included Darren Collison, Cory Joseph, Bojan Bogdanovic, Doug McDermott and Domas Sabonis. After securing the lead early in the fourth, the Pacers took care of business to close out the Cavs for a nice runaway road win.
Bogey (5 points) and Myles Turner (7 points) helped get the Pacers offense going early in the first quarter to keep pace with the Cavs as Cedi Osman and George Hill were cooking early. Darren Collision and Victor Oladipo tagged in and pushed the Pacers offense the rest of the first half.
Collison had his best offensive game of the early season finishing with 15 points and 6 assists. Bogey logged a game-high 25 points while Oldaipo finished with 24 points and 6 assists. CoJo and Sabonis played heavy minutes off the bench with Domas scoring 15 points but only grabbing 5 rebounds.
Fortunately, for the first time in the last five years, the Pacers are simply a better team than the Cavs. That allowed the Pacers to withstand a severe rebound disadvantage which favored the Cavs, 39-24.
The Pacers also made just 5 of 13 three-point attempts which accounts for the lowest number of 3PAs in the NBA so far this season. The prior low was 18 by three teams, well, two other teams since the Pacers prior low for 3PAs was 18. The Cavs only made two more 3s on 25 attempts, so like the rebounding issues, the Pacers were able to easily survive their anemic effort from behind the arc.
After finishing the roadie, 2-1 the Pacers return home to play the Trail Blazers on Monday sitting in fourth place in the East at 4-2. Prior to the game, Nate McMillan said that Tyreke Evans would be back in the mix for the game on Monday, assuming he makes it to practice on time before the game.
A couple highlights for your viewing pleasure:
Vic with a little extra flash on the pass pic.twitter.com/JZxpamravK— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) October 28, 2018