76ers: 109 Pacers: 106
So the Pacers did something they haven’t done too many times this month, they lost. After soundly beating the 76ers last week, this last matchup was against a team that was determined not to lose the game from outside shooting. They absolutely stuffed Danny Granger and held him to only 4 points! George Hill and Barbosa were also unable to get anything going from beyond the arc. Despite the 76ers fantastic defense from the perimeter, it was obvious that they had no answer inside for both Pacer’s power forwards, Hansbrough and West. David West, in particular, had one of his best performances as a Pacer racking up 32 points and 11 boards as he has become a large reason for the Pacer’s April success.
Jared Wade from 8.9 seconds wrote about how the game atmosphere resembled a game in the playoffs and I would have to agree as it seemed that the Pacer faithful were out in full force to watch their team get closer to clinching that No. 3 spot in the East. Unlike a playoff game, however, it didn’t seem like we had the cream of the crop as far as NBA officials go. It wasn’t the calls themselves that were extremely bad, basketball has its share of calls that tend to go back and forth in a sort of sports yin and yang, it was the inconsistency of those calls! The one call that had me out of my seat was the overtime 5 second call, when George was unable to inbound the ball in under 5 seconds. I understand that this is a rule, but it is such a tick-tack thing to call in OT when a team is down! Then the next inbound with the 76ers, they seemed to benefit from a slower count! Ultimately it didn’t matter since we were able to tie up the ball and get a chance to come back and tie the game, but those were just a few of the inconsistent calls.
Despite the fact that it was a Pacer’s loss you have to like what you saw from them during this game. 2 years ago the Pacers would have no shot of winning a game when Danny Granger only scored 4 points. It was good to see this team step up, especially David West, and continue to play competitively! Pacer fans should take comfort in two things: this game was a lot more meaningful to the 76ers than to us and our last games are all at home, so there is a great chance it is more of when than how the Pacers will clinch the 3rd seed. It sure is a good time to be a Pacer fan!
On another note, did anybody see Doug Collins lose his mind at the end of the game? The mics picked him up jawing with somebody standing outside of view and had to be restrained by his assistant coaches. It was after the game so, of course, it was glanced over, but I’d like to find out more about what the heck was going on!