During their last five games, the Pacers have scored an average of 106.2 points per game (1.1 below their season average) and allowed an average of 105.0 points per game (1.8 below their season average). Jonas Valanciunas had 18, helping to set the early tone.
Those circumstances didn't seem to faze the Raptors, who have won six of their last seven despite playing their third game in four nights. When excluding this game, IN was shooting an average of 7.2-of-21.4 (33.6%) on 3-pointers IN January. His severe shooting issues to start the season are now a memory.
Without fellow all-star Lowry in the backcourt with him, DeRozan drew double and sometimes triple teams all night.
Rookie Jayson Tatum helped turn the tide, scoring 11 of his 16 points in the decisive third period. Luckily for the Raptors, the bench unit provided just that.
Cameroon's Joel Embiid added 16 points and Aussie Ben Simmons chipped in 15 for Philadelphia and for a time it looked as if the eighth regular-season National Basketball Association game to be played in London could see the 76ers on the right side of the kind of blowout that fans there saw a year ago, when the Denver Nuggets trounced the Indiana Pacers 140-112. The Pacers had a better turnover percentage (7.7 vs. 10.4) and had a much better offensive rebounding percentage (25.5 vs. 19.6). Most interesting was his thoughts on his future.
"Full credit to the management for sticking with it and uncovering some of these guys who can come in and contribute because that's clearly the story of the Raptors' season", Dixon said.
Following the game, James was predictably less than thrilled and Dave McMenamin of ESPN passed along his thoughts, including that the Cavs are "in a funk" at the moment.
"The daddy side kicks in sometimes".
"I'm going to be a old guy, so I don't know if Orlando would be interested or not". "One player they've discussed, DeAndre Jordan, the Clippers center, he does not rise to the level in Cleveland, I'm told, of putting that Brooklyn pick in". 18 years I've been in this light right here.
"Completely different, completely different dynamic of the game", said DeRozan on Friday when comparing the Cavaliers and Warriors. And he lived up to all of the inflated expectations. It's a team thing.
"We're in a funk". The Pacers were far more efficient and it was crucial in the end. Led by seven players finishing in double figures, the home team controlled the pace for nearly the entire game, providing their starters an early finish to their night in the fourth quarter. His response: "From the inside, it doesn't look good either".
The Cavaliers are much more disoriented today as they finally catch their breath before starting a four-game homestand, starting with a contest against Golden State on January 15 at Quicken Loans Arena.