Slow start leads to another close loss for the Pacers against Spurs; here are six observations
The Pacers scored 49 points in the 4th quarter, but they gave up at least 32 in each quarter and never led. They're now 0-2.
This one had a little bit of everything. The night started with coach Rick Carlisle acknowledging the passing of former NBA official Tony Brown due to pancreatic cancer and Gregg Popovich joking around with reporters after a short pre-game press conference.
The Pacers then started the same five for the second game in a row and right away, Myles Turner’s absence was felt. They yielded 36 points in the first quarter for the second consecutive game and the Spurs scored 18 quick ones in the paint. The Spurs were not only were doing what they wanted, but also knocking down 3s.
By halftime, they torched the Pacers for 70 points, they led by 15 and had made 12 of 20 3s while shooting 55%. (In their season opener, they scored 102 points and lost to the Hornets by 27.)
Ultimately, the Spurs held on for a 137-134 win in a game where the two teams combined for 84 points in the final stanza. It was the only exciting time of the game since the Pacers finally started to click and give optimal effort, and the fans let them hear it.
The Pacers inbounded the ball with 3.8 seconds left and Bennedict Mathurin missed a 3-point try that would have pushed the game into overtime.
“We knew this was gonna be a tough challenge this year,” Carlisle said postgame. “Our players are finding out some of realities. … The thing we’re finding out, more than anything, is that hard play and forceful play is what’s going to carry the day for us.”
Below are six observations from the Pacers’ loss, dropping them to 0-2.