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Luol Deng, Derrick Rose ensure Pacers undefeated no more

Nov 16, 2013, 11:16 PM EDT

It was just one of those nights for Indiana.

A few times a season teams have games where they just can’t do anything right. Indiana’s first off night of the season — and the first night their defense took a vacation — came in Chicago on the night the Bulls found their missing groove on offense and the result was a blowout 110-94 Chicago win that turned the entire second half into garbage time.

The Pacers fall to 9-1 but are still on top of the Eastern Conference. The Bulls improve to 5-3. The two Central division rivals have spit their first two games this season.

The vaunted Pacers defense could not contain the Bulls offense Saturday. Chicago got 46 points in the paint on 59 percent shooting, plus they hit 11-of-19 from three. Whatever they tried to do worked.

The real good news for Bulls fans was Derrick Rose had his best game of the young season and found his jump shot — he had 20 points and hit 6-of-11 from three. It wasn’t a perfect night for him, Rose was 0-3 in the paint dealing with the size of Roy Hibbert in his way, but he led a Bulls offense to a big night.

Luol Deng had 23 points on 14 shots, and seven Bulls scored in double figures.

The Chicago run started early — the Bulls make seven straight shots early in the first quarter and jumped out to 10-point lead. Chicago pushed the pace early (30 first quarter possessions) and they got buckets before Indy got set. Deng had 12 first quarter points and Indy was up 11 after one.

Then in the second quarter the Bulls just could not miss — they shot 66.7 percent and hit 5-of-5 from three. They shared the ball and the Pacers defense struggled with the onslaught, giving up some dunks at the rim.

The Pacers were up 60-35 at the half and the game was over from there.

Indy fans took to twitter angry with the officiating, but that was not the issue. Yes, the refs let this one get physical but teams need to adjust to how a game is called and Indy did not. Pacers players were missing shots and looking at the refs expecting calls that were not coming.

Paul George was 3-of-14 shooting, David West 6-of-16, Lance Stephenson 5-of-14 and as a team the Pacers shot just 40 percent.

Credit the Bulls defense with some of that — they are defending like you expect of them again.

If they can combine that with Rose finding his groove and some more consistent offense, the Bulls are going to start to look a lot more dangerous.

But don’t read too much into this game, this was one of those nights for the Pacers.

  1. legend30 - Nov 17, 2013 at 12:03 AM

    Great win for Chicago. For some reason, I thought they we’re going to lose against Toronto last night. I was wrong, but I had a good feeling they were going to beat Pacers.

    • belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:46 AM

      The funny thing is the Bulls are still not up to snuff in the ball handling department. When they get that down pat they are going to be very tough to beat most of the time. But playing winning basketball in the regular season was never the problem. It’s playing this way night after night against the same team in the playoffs that they need to nail.

  2. metalhead65 - Nov 17, 2013 at 12:05 AM

    oh no what will the Pacers do now? maybe win 9 more in a row? if it did not mean anything to the bulls when they lost at Indy then this means even less to the Pacers. they still have the better team and record.

    • legend30 - Nov 17, 2013 at 12:35 AM

      Relax, do you see anyone mentioning Pacers should panic? The Pacers been the most impressive team so far, but the season is still early.

      • legend30 - Nov 17, 2013 at 1:45 AM

        Thinking about it: Suns and Minnesota been more impressive than Pacers. No one expected them to play this well early in the season.

    • antistratfordian - Nov 17, 2013 at 1:03 AM

      “oh no what will the Pacers do now? maybe win 9 more in a row?”

      Unlikely. FYI, this was the first winning team the Pacers played on the road. The Pacers soft schedule is coming to an end soon though – they’re finally going to start facing winning teams.

      Up soon is San Antonio, Oklahoma, Clippers, Portland – all on the road – 4 of the top 5 teams in the West – and Minnesota at home somewhere in there. They play the Clippers and Portland back-to-back then San Antonio and Oklahoma back-to-back.

      By the end of that trip they could end up #2 in the East. If not before then.

      • legend30 - Nov 17, 2013 at 1:42 AM

        Excellent post, preach!

    • maracineanu16 - Nov 17, 2013 at 2:01 AM

      Hey Bulls’ haters – is our team really overrated right now? We’re underrated, so shut the up, because we’re just getting wormed up. So shut the up. For Pacers’ fans – You guys have a great team, I admire it, I really do and if I wasn’t a Bull’s fan, I would be a Pacers’ fan – tough team, good defense, great coach, etc.

      • belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:53 AM

        I was going to give your post a thumbs up, but I don’t like your claim of them getting wormed up. I don’t believe they use performance enhancing worms of any kind. Maybe they drink a lot of agave Tequila, I haven’t heard about that.

      • maracineanu16 - Nov 17, 2013 at 8:08 AM

        thanks anyway. in fact, all I wanted to say was that the Bulls were under-performing until last game, I didn’t mean to be to sarcastic. Once again – thanks. And sometimes I may use not the best words to express, because English is a foreign language for me

      • belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 8:40 AM

        It’s cool–it’s all in good fun. And you’re damned right about Bulls haters.

  3. philtration - Nov 17, 2013 at 1:01 AM

    “But don’t read too much into this game, this was one of those nights for the Pacers.”
    Typical comment Kurt.

    Funny how you no longer want to post anything about the Bulls since they have won 4 straight.

  4. cmart0907 - Nov 17, 2013 at 2:27 AM

    ” The Pacers were up 60-35 at the half and the game was over from there”. Wow the Pacers got outscored 34-75 in the second half while leading by 25 at halftime and they lost. Do these guys even proof read before publishing?

  5. pistolpete0903 - Nov 17, 2013 at 3:03 AM

    They were who we thought they were!!!!

    It is a long season, it was going to happen sooner or later.
    The Central division is going to be a grinder between the Bulls and Pacers; both jockeying for home court. As Rose gets healthy and back to his groove, it should be a fun game every time they square off.

  6. maracineanu16 - Nov 17, 2013 at 3:12 AM

    By the way – I think the question about that 15 games winning streak is answered now, isn’t it?

    • emosnar - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:02 AM

      … how else would it have been answered numnuts.

      Note to Pacers: You don’t have to play tight or any different way because of the name on the jersey. They are like every other team. Your overall talent/team work should dominate every game. Block out the refs, crowd and everyone else. They are irrelevant.

      Playing tight in the first half cost this game. Vogel made rushed substitutions too early in the game messing up chemistry. However,great learning moment and early in the season. Then again Pacers weren’t treating this as a playoff game. this was scouting 101. We played S. Hill to get him some early season reps and we see what Copeland can do in short spurts. O. Johnson and CJ watson played a lot and all looked sub par. So this was a tester for our bench just as much as for our starters. Everyone shot bad, everyone. Bulls were on fire from 3pt. Not big runs during the game just shot great all night.

      Pacers will continue to go hard from here on out. Championship trophy still on the dartboard.
      I’m not gonna pull a D Rose and say the Bulls aren’t our rivals cause they are. Saying the contrary is just being ignorant and disrespectful. The Bulls are our baby bros until they knock us off the Central division perch. We don’t care for the arrogance but we hear it. Game 3 is the true match.See you then.

      • belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:55 AM

        When the Pacers “go hard” I sure hope they’re wearing their cups so it’s not too embarrassing.

      • jimeejohnson - Nov 17, 2013 at 9:41 AM

        “Note to Pacers and their fans. When your team pounds it’s chest, and speaks openly about how great they are without actually winning anything yet; you’re going to get piled on and mocked after every loss.”

  7. 1972wasalongtimeago - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:12 AM

    Note to Pacers and their fans. When your team pounds it’s chest, and speaks openly about how great they are without actually winning anything yet; you’re going to get piled on and mocked after every loss.

    You had the advantage of being considered a scrappy little team that could, a team that everyone could like; but all you do is talk talk talk. You went from everybody pulling for you to people thinking you’re a bunch of A-Holes. And next time your team loses, the noise will get worse.

    • emosnar - Nov 17, 2013 at 1:08 PM

      Go back and read the articles, these dudes been humbled. You might have us confused with the Heat or maybe D Rose. That lil dude is the most arrogant cat in the game. What are you watchin. We had to hear all offseason how is is faster, jumps higher, Im not ready though, my neck hurts. We have no rivals. We all know D rose is soft serve. Next time we knockin that ass on the ground in the paint.

      See you hoes game 3.

  8. belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:43 AM

    Kurt, really? “It was one of those nights for Indiana?” INDIANA HAD NOTHING TO DO WITH IT. The way the Bulls played they would have beat the Michael Jordan era Bulls. When the Bulls offense and defense clicks at the same time there is no team that can beat them. IT WAS ONE OF THOSE NIGHTS FOR THE BULLS. Your beloved Heat would have (and have in the past) lost by a much bigger deficit than Indiana. With all due respect what you posted was pure, unadulterated garbage.

  9. belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:47 AM

    P.S. Why didn’t I see Paul George flexing his biceps last night? Oh, that’s right, he wasn’t really shown on camera when he was pulled and riding the bench.

    • deeballer - Nov 17, 2013 at 8:21 AM

      Good one. So, is the discussion of PG as League MVP still alive?

      • belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 8:38 AM

        It depends: does MVP stand for “Most Valuable Paul”?

  10. belleby123 - Nov 17, 2013 at 7:49 AM

    PPS. The Pacers were never “up 60-35 at the half”. You might want to check what your wrote.

  11. chitownmatt - Nov 17, 2013 at 10:06 AM

    It was a bad game for the Pacers, just like it was a Bad game for the Bulls the last time they met. We haven’t seen the real Bulls play the real Pacers just yet. Should be fun to see when it finally happens.

  12. davidly - Nov 17, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    I have an idea: let’s engage in a bunch of macho posturing–as if we have anything to say about the outcome of a game played by people other than ourselves and at a level we’ll never quite be able to appreciate, in spite of getting to enjoy watching them.

    And then let’s attribute said macho posturing to the players of the team we don’t like–as if they are the only ones that demonstrably show excitement when they make spectacular plays.

    Whose with me?

  13. jhuck92 - Nov 17, 2013 at 1:49 PM

    Sam Smith said it best in his blog this morning. “Noah had maybe the best four-point game you’ll ever see. He fouled out with seven rebounds and six assists. But his defense in the post against Hibbert, through whom the Pacers run their offense, was spectacular.”

  14. jimeejohnson - Nov 17, 2013 at 8:33 PM

    Indiana has the best corn in dee world. You drive through mile after mile of corn fields, then hit the Indianapolis 500 Speedway, and then more corn. Corny, I know.

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