The Indiana Pacers finally overcame their woefully disappointing Summer League showing by grabbing a nice looking win over the Los Angeles Clippers. The Pacers entered their Consolation Game as the 32 seed, getting run out of the gym in each of their last four games, but finally showed some purpose in their final outing. They had another strong start, but were finally able to close strong, outscoring the Clippers 27-19 in the final quarter.
It was another game without Aaron Holiday and Brian Bowen II, the outlook looked as bleak as any other game this Summer League, but a team that has desperately lacked any real breakout performances got not one, but two tonight. Alize Johnson became the focus of the team without Holiday and was better prepared for the situation tonight, elevating his game to the point where he could push his team to a win.
Johnson finished with 25 points and 13 rebounds and got to those numbers with a purpose. He shot 10-17 from the floor, including some crafty drives and step backs, but it was his rebounding that really looked closer to what one would expect from Johnson. Of his 13 rebounds, five were on the offensive glass. More importantly, the Pacers had eight second chance points off of those rebounds, six of those points coming from Johnson himself.
While Johnson had a great game, he was given plenty of help from DeVaughn Akoon-Purcell, who had 24 points of his own. Akoon-Purcell was one of the better players for this Pacers this Summer League and he saved his best stuff for last, scoring 13 points in the fourth quarter, hitting three shots from deep to help Indiana close out the win.
Beyond Johnson and Akoon-Purcell, the Pacers got a lot of solid all around performances from a lot of guys. MiKyle McIntosh reached double figures with 10 points and Markis McDuffie came close with nine, hitting a pair of threes. Off the bench, Jaylen Johnson showed no quit in the fourth, scoring four, including a make off a pair of offensive rebounds. He then drew a charge to keep the Clippers from going on a game-saving run halfway through the quarter.
The Pacers wrap up the 2019 Las Vegas Summer League with a 1-4 record, which while disappointing, at least wasn’t a winless trip. From here, the Pacers will finalize their roster heading into the 2019-20 season, making it a long two months before the blue and gold jerseys take the court again.