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Pacers improve to 7-0 with win over Nets

Nov 10, 2013, 8:00 AM EDT

paul george Getty Images

Heading into this weekend, we wondered if the Pacers would be able to continue their perfect start to the season facing a tough road matchup against the Brooklyn Nets.

But while the Nets are still finding their way from a chemistry standpoint, the Pacers are already there. And behind yet another strong all-around game from Paul George, Indiana improved to 7-0 on the season with a 96-91 road victory.

Brooklyn was in this game throughout, and cut a fourth quarter deficit of 10 points with under five minutes to play to just three in the game’s closing possessions. Joe Johnson had a chance to tie it with 11 seconds remaining, but his three-pointer rimmed out and David West secured the rebound before sealing the win for his team at the free throw line in the game’s closing seconds.

The Nets are going to rely on their starting lineup throughout the season to do the bulk of the damage, and on this night they largely came through as expected. But their bench unit didn’t provide much support, and in fact, neither did that of the Pacers. This was a matchup of the two teams’ best players, and Indiana’s had simply proven to be better by the time the final buzzer had sounded.

George led all scorers with 24 points, and got help from West with 18, while Lance Stephenson and Roy Hibbert chipped in 15 apiece. The Nets had similar contributions from four of their starters save Kevin Garnett, who managed just six points in 27 minutes but was effective as always defensively.

The only thing worth questioning with Indiana as it relates to the team’s fast start is whether the cohesiveness of having the majority of the same players in place as a season ago is a factor, along with the players’ relative hunger to succeed after coming so close to reaching the Finals last year.

One would think that teams like the Heat and the Bulls will be catching up at some point, but for now, the Pacers have proven to be the class of the league with their undefeated start at this early stage of the regular season.

  1. metalhead65 - Nov 10, 2013 at 8:14 AM

    no excuses the Pacers are the better team. the nets made their big changes to win now and while they may eventually play better I don’t want to hear about chemistry or any other excuses. they lost to the wizards the night before was that a chemistry loss to? it is a good thing the Pacers are using that loss to the heat to motivate them. to come that close only to lose has made them work harder to get to get home court advantage in the playoffs. if you want to talk chemistry the Pacer bench is brand new and has not had much time to work together because of injuries that key players were recovering from in preseason so watch out when they start to mesh together.

  2. kingzwithringz - Nov 10, 2013 at 8:37 AM

    Wonder how Danny Granger fits with this team now?

  3. kingzwithringz - Nov 10, 2013 at 8:49 AM

    Wonder how Danny Granger fits in with this team now…

  4. ohioteamsusuallysuck - Nov 10, 2013 at 8:51 AM

    Pacers will trade granger for Evan turner and a draft pick. You heard it here first

    • phillyphan76ers - Nov 10, 2013 at 9:36 AM

      You really think the Sixers would give up a young player with rising value and a draft pick for a 30 year old banged up player? That doesn’t fit Hinkie’s plan. I agree that it would be a great trade for the Pacers, but I don’t see any way the Sixers would accept. #TogetherWeBuild

  5. fnf417 - Nov 10, 2013 at 8:52 AM

    I ready to see Indiana and Miami play this is a better team then they beat in the playoffs!

    • pistolpete0903 - Nov 10, 2013 at 10:59 AM

      I think I get the gist of the comment (dude, full stops and commas are free!!, do use them)
      I guess from talent level, the two teams are evenly matched. It is the mental part where the Heat have edge; comes with having played and being tested in the playoffs. Still think that Pacers might have to go through some painful humps this season.

      • kb2408 - Nov 10, 2013 at 11:58 AM

        Miami’s second best player sure didn’t look too mentally sharp against the Celtics.

    • basketballgod87 - Nov 10, 2013 at 12:14 PM

      I wish people a wait its just the begin of season.Wait untill they go through some adversity; like Danny Granger coming back or just wait to till postseason yeah they looking real good now its just the begin of the season and most teams haven’t play up till there potential yet so will see

  6. kingzwithringz - Nov 10, 2013 at 9:05 AM

    Guess the Pacers are focused on MIA now. Dont let the Nets or the Bulls bite you in the butt.

  7. xlichamps - Nov 10, 2013 at 9:19 AM

    The Heat and Bulls are doing all the talking, the Pacers are doing all the winning.

  8. kb2408 - Nov 10, 2013 at 11:52 AM

    Paul G is the clear cut league MVP at the moment. Best player on the best team. Gotta put Kevin L. at number 2. Yeah, I know it’s only the first couple weeks into the season.

    • legend30 - Nov 10, 2013 at 12:15 PM

      Agree. Still early, but man they been spectacular, you could also include: T. Parker.

    • antistratfordian - Nov 10, 2013 at 6:40 PM

      It only pays to be the “clear cut league MVP” in April. A lot of wannabes have been MVP favorites in early November. If the season was only 7 games long LeBron would not have any MVPs.

    • pistolpete0903 - Nov 11, 2013 at 11:12 AM

      Kevin Love anyone? 27ppg (on 48%), 14 rpg.
      Admitted his defense is nothing to crow about; but hey when was defense a factor in MVP deliberations? It is like a beauty contest.

  9. themagicfanguy - Nov 10, 2013 at 12:49 PM

    @Ohioteams Lmao that’s ridiculous. Rebuilding Philly is going to trade a young talented player for an old and injury prone player, AND a draft pick that will most likely be a lottery pick in one of the best lotteries in recent memory? What a moron.

    • redbaronx - Nov 10, 2013 at 11:30 PM

      @themagicfanguy – I agree with the gist of your comment, but calling Granger old? I didn’t realize it until you said it, but then I looked it up. He’s 30! He’s getting up there in NBA years. I might be reconsidering my position that Indiana shouldn’t trade him…

  10. gquesen - Nov 11, 2013 at 12:11 AM

    Heat will be in the finals over these guys. Book it. Pacers can have their fun for the time being.

  11. cruzan80 - Nov 11, 2013 at 7:49 AM

    Seriously people. They’ve beaten two “good” teams (Bulls & Nets) this year so far…..& we’re not even sure how good those two teams really are.

    • bougin89 - Nov 11, 2013 at 9:52 AM

      Obviously you take the hot start by the Pacers with a grain of salt. But if it didn’t matter at all why would anyone even watch the games right now? Contenders typically have success in the regular season, they also need success in the “second season”. We will see what happens.

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