The Indiana Pacers got the response they were looking for after the frustrating loss to Philadelphia, blowing out the Memphis Grizzlies to wrap up their two game home stand. The Pacers put on an offensive clinic, scoring a season high 134 points on 60% shooting in the wire-to-wire victory.
The Pacers opened up the game with a pair of threes, methodically expanding their lead throughout the first half, heading into the locker room up 71-50. Though a quarter ending foul on T.J. McConnell would get De’Anthony Melton to the free throw line to give Memphis at third quarter victory, Indiana would respond in the fourth, putting a stamp on the game despite a strong close from Richmond native Desmond Bane.
It was a different story from Sunday’s loss, not only in being able to close out the win after going up by 20, but in how they were able to get there, and keep the game there, from that point. The Pacers never relented in this one, preventing Memphis from getting into any sort of game-changing run. They did this through their offense for the most part; they weren’t particularly sharp in terms of rebounding and turnovers, but they made sure it didn’t matter.
Domantas Sabonis led the way with a career-high tying 32 points and 13 rebounds, finishing 13-15 from the floor, hitting a pair of threes. Sabonis was one of the big reasons the Pacers were able to keep the game out of reach all night, doing a majority of his damage right around the rim. He made it look easy not only scoring, but with one of his best all around rebounding efforts in recent games as well.
The Pacers as a team scored 62 in the paint, outscoring Memphis by 10 in the battle of the top two teams in the paint. Myles Turner also had extended success in the paint, putting in 22 points and 11 rebounds (with five blocks for good measure) on 9-13 shooting, hitting a trio of threes.
The defense wasn’t great, but had a some nice stretches, particularly from McConnell and Justin Holiday. McConnell had four steals, leading to four first half points while Holiday locked in for a pair of tremendous perimeter blocks. Holiday reached double figures with 10 while McConnell had seven assists, tying Malcolm Brogdon for the game high.
Brogdon scored 23 points, also on solid shooting, going 9-16 from the field. Jeremy Lamb broke out with five threes, finishing with 19 points. Lamb’s three point shooting has been tremendous since his season low three points against Charlotte, going 9-14 in his last three outings.
The Indiana offense hummed all night, thanks in part to their ball movement (30 assists) and ability to hit shots (16-29 from three). It was a nice statement win against the streaking Grizzlies following the disastrous 15-point fourth quarter on Monday. They scored at or above 30 points in each quarter tonight.
Unfortunately, the Pacers aren’t able to relish in tonight’s victory in snapping Memphis’s seven-game winning streak for long as they have a quick turnaround tomorrow, facing the Central Division leading Milwaukee Bucks on the second night of a back-to-back.