The Indiana Pacers moved back in the win column, topping the Memphis Grizzlies to complete their season sweep at the FexEx Forum. Though the Grizzlies were playing shorthanded, they kept on the toes of the Pacers for much of the night, forcing the Pacers to edge them quarter by quarter to wrap up the win.
The Pacers did win all four quarters, but by minimal margins of five, five, two, and one. Those included five points by the Grizzlies to close the first and second quarters, followed by a big four point swing for the Pacers, where a Myles Turner block turned into a T.J. McConnell finish.
Love to see it: Myles Turner denies Grayson Allen. ✋— FOX Sports Indiana (@FSIndiana) December 3, 2019
TV: FSI | Stream: FSGO pic.twitter.com/kExQmvnZh6
In the fourth, defense proved optional for the first half, allowing Memphis to make it a 10 point game with six minutes remaining. Justin Holiday would put the game on ice as a response, hitting a corner three to make it a 13 point lead, then followed it up with another to push the advantage to 15 with three minutes remaining.
Holiday finished with 15 points, shooting 5-6 from three point range, four of those coming in the corner. As a team, the Pacers shot 16-38 from three point range, following up their 18-three pointer effort against the Grizzlies in Indianapolis. Aaron Holiday made three himself, helping the Pacers bench to a 34-27 edge, which wasn’t the case early when the Grizzlies led by as many as six early in the second.
The balance of scoring among the starters returned tonight with all five players scoring between 14-19, granting the Pacers enough balance to offset big nights from Jaren Jackson Jr., Solomon Hill, and Dillion Brooks. Malcolm Brogdon led the way with 19 points, finishing with nine assists. Six of those came in the second quarter, which again proved a valuable offset to a particularly dangerous stretch from Jackson.
Domantas Sabonis also had a big night in the assist game, finishing two shy of a triple double with 18 points, 14 rebounds, and eight dimes. Four of those came early in the fourth, to four different players. Sabonis wound up with a big game after struggling in the first quarter, capping his night with a thundering jam over Bruno Caboclo.
The Pacers as a team totaled 31 for the night, at least two each for the starters. T.J. Warren had two himself, which makes it just the seventh game he’s had multiple assists. On the night, he scored 14 points, continuing his lethal shooting from deep, going 4-6. Jeremy Lamb had 15 himself, picking up seven rebounds, three assists, and two steals on 6-11 shooting.
Turner bounced back following Saturday’s frustrating showing against Philadelphia, scoring 17 points on 5-11 shooting, leading the team with seven free throw attempts. Turner helped kick start the offense in both halves, scoring the first four of the game and then five more to start the third. He also had a pair of blocks, the latter of which coming against De’Anthony Melton, his rebound and assist leading to J. Holiday’s fifth corner three.
Myles in a span of 12 seconds:— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) December 3, 2019
While Indiana gained the lead for good in the second quarter, there was a real lack of flow early that helped Memphis into the lead in that quarter. The Pacers really struggled putting their foot on the throat of the Grizzlies, in large part due to their inability to stop Memphis off of turnovers. The Pacers had 15 to Memphis’s 12, but the Grizzlies outscored Indiana 27-9 in points off turnovers.
What the Pacers did do well was play “modern basketball.” With shot selection being something of a hot topic early this season, the Pacers shot a season high 38 attempts tonight, paying off for a 42% clip. Indiana finding those attempts within the flow of the offense no doubt helped their percentage, but it also helped them overcome a rather sizable 54-32 disadvantage in points in the paint.
The win moves the Pacers to 13-7 on the season and gets them their first win in this five game road trip. They’ll be back in action on Wednesday, when they face the Oklahoma City Thunder, wrapping up their season series against OKC.