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Pacers’ Chris Copeland hits game-winner to beat Bucks (VIDEO)

Apr 9, 2014, 11:46 PM EDT

Chris Copeland had appeared in just 37 games for the Pacers coming into Wednesday night’s contest against the league-worst Bucks, and had averaged just 5.7 minutes per contest.

But when you decide to rest all five starters in a desperate attempt to get right before the playoffs, other guys will obviously get the chance to step up and produce.

Copeland did exactly that, pouring in 18 points off the bench in just 17 minutes of action, including this tough game-winner with 1.2 seconds remaining that helped his head coach’s strategy pay off — but just barely.

  1. indyzown - Apr 9, 2014 at 11:57 PM

    Yea just barley back in the lead for the eastern conference , FOR GOOD !!!

  2. ProBasketballPundit - Apr 10, 2014 at 12:25 AM

    That was dumb. The Heat have the right idea going for the #2 seed. Who would you rather play in the second round, the Charlotte Bobcats or the winner of the Bulls/Nets series?

    • savvybynature - Apr 10, 2014 at 12:43 AM

      Who cares, should beat any of those teams easily if you are a title contender.

      • ProBasketballPundit - Apr 10, 2014 at 12:45 AM

        Not if the teams you’re talking about are title contenders too. Bulls, probably not. But the Nets are playing pretty freaking good right now.

      • antistratfordian - Apr 10, 2014 at 1:45 AM

        Indeed. Heat fans shouldn’t worry about who they face. If they’re the best team in the league, which I believe they are, then it won’t matter who is in front of them.

        Give them Indiana in the first round, the Clippers in the 2nd round, the Spurs in the 3rd round and the Thunder in the finals. They would win all of those series.

      • sonnysuave - Apr 10, 2014 at 11:31 AM

        Wow, anti… for the most part, your comments are typically intelligible. But this mindless comment ranks all the way at the bottom, tied with shuttaman’s ‘lakers all day’ comment!

    • casualcommenter - Apr 10, 2014 at 12:52 AM

      The Heat have played LeBron James a combined 79 minutes the past 2 games, both of which the Heat lost narrowly in the final minutes.

      If the Heat were intentionally aiming for the #2 seed, they would have kept LeBron on a strict minutes limit to prevent themselves from winning those games and limit the injury risk to their best player. Instead, they had LeBron played until the very end of both games.

      You don’t play LeBron James the entire game if you’re hoping to lose. LeBron wouldn’t have been so angry about Mason Plumlee’s last second block last night if the Heat were hoping to lose. Etc.

      • casualcommenter - Apr 10, 2014 at 12:55 AM

        Simply put, if the Heat were aiming for the #2 seed, they would have done what the Pacers did and bench all of their starters.

        Instead, they had LeBron James play 42 minutes against the physical Memphis Grizzlies on the second night of a back to back, and they had him endure a couple of hard intentional fouls from Tony Allen and Marc Gasol.

        That only makes sense if they’re trying to win basketball games.

      • ProBasketballPundit - Apr 10, 2014 at 1:01 AM

        Are you kidding me? Justin Hamilton played 13 minutes for the Heat tonight. I watch every single Heat game and I’ve never heard of him. I also watch a ton of NBA and I’ve never heard of him. Wade isn’t playing. Wade, Beasley, Birdman… those guys didn’t play. They basically let LeBron go crazy with a bunch of trash.

      • apkyletexas - Apr 10, 2014 at 1:03 AM

        If the Heat were aiming for the #2 seed, they would have surrounded LeBron with one of the worst benches in the league and a gimpy Wade. And require LeBron to win nearly every game through sheer individual effort.

        Which they did.

      • gofinsgoheatfloria - Apr 10, 2014 at 7:17 AM

        Correct: the Heat weren’t/aren’t playing for #2. With that said: yes, they would like to have #1 – but they won’t risk much to get it. There is nothing new in this. Spo’s approach is the same as Pop’s: two things matter for the playoffs: be playing well and be healthy. If the #1 seed were their prime objective, they would have played Wade last night – he had worked out very well – but doing that would disregard the second precept.

        The first precept is where some of us are getting a little edgy.

  3. antistratfordian - Apr 10, 2014 at 1:12 AM

    Oh, poor bougin89… I feel for you, bro.

    • bougin89 - Apr 10, 2014 at 9:27 AM

      At least the Brewers are off to a good start this season?

  4. 00maltliquor - Apr 10, 2014 at 2:19 AM

    Damn you Copeland!!! You killed my moneyline!!!

  5. jcmeyer10 - Apr 10, 2014 at 1:50 PM

    Get it Cope! Go Buffs!

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