The Detroit Pistons headed into Indianapolis looking to end a nine game losing streak at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. The Indiana Pacers were coming off a resounding 125-91 win over the New York Knicks two nights ago. The Pistons were no match.
Already missing rookie Andre Drummond, tonight they were missing starting shooting guard Brandon Knight due to a right knee hyper extension in their win over the Charlotte Bobcats the game before. Detroit came out flat.
The Pacers got the ball inside to Roy Hibbert early. Hibbert ate Greg Monroe and Jason Maxiell all night. After a Hibbert dunk and a David West jump shot, Rodney Stuckey knocked down a jumper for Detroit’s first bucket. Hibbert then had another slam, he then fed a cutting George Hill for a layup and he was fouled by Jose Calderon. Lance Stephenson had a floater and Indiana had an 11-2 lead.
Kyle Singler, Calderon, and Stuckey had consecutive buckets for Detroit to get within 13-8 but that’s as close as they’d get the entire game. Indiana went on an 8-0 run consisting of bad Detroit turnovers turning into easy Pacers points. Indiana was up 34-17 after one.
The second quarter started with Will Bynum throwing an alley-oop to Slava Kravtsov. Then little used Pacers rookie Orlando Johnson knocked down three 3-pointers and Tyler Hansbrough went to work on the boards and making hustle plays. The Pistons were done at that point as Lawrence Frank inserted little used players like Kim English and Khris Middleton looking for a spark.
The whole Pistons team just had little energy and they couldn’t keep up in a raucous environment and against a high flying and hot Indiana Pacers squad. The Pistons fell in Indy 114-92. Bynum led the Pistons with 17 points and Kravtsov had his first career double-double with 14 points and 10 rebounds.
The Pacers shot a scorching 10/14 from downtown while the Pistons only made 3/19. The Pacers had 29 assists to the Pistons 14.
I was disappointed at the fact that this team came out with zero energy. You’re playing a division rival, on the road, and had won two straight road games. The starting unit was terrible. They combined to shoot 11/42 with Stuckey being the only started in double digits with 11. Hibbert pushed Monroe and Maxiell around all night and it was really embarrassing.
The Pacers are a very good basketball team, I think they can really challenge the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Playoffs come April and May. All in all, for them to just come out as flat as they did is just terrible. These two teams match up for the final time this season at the Palace tomorrow night. Knight will undergo an MRI on his knee tomorrow afternoon and I doubt he plays tomorrow night.