Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Game 5 at Washington Wizard

Well, if we're sticking with the fight theme, the Pacers played the roll of a tomato can tonight going down late in the second (quarter). They staggered around for another for another two quarters before a TKO was declared at the final buzzer favoring the Wizards, 117-91. The Pacers had plenty of excuses for a loss and they used up every ounce of each excuse.

  • This was a back-to-back game after playing at home last night.
  • Jermaine O'Neal didn't suit up, resting the ankle he twisted last night. Don't worry Commissioner, he was suited up in street clothes, just not his uniform. Hopefully, we won't get to enjoy anymore of his splendid wardrobe this year.
  • Saras appeared to be resting his back again but came in to play in the second half and finished up the garbage time minutes.

Rick Carlisle was having none of it in his post game comments.

"We gotta be a no excuses team and we gotta compete at a high level whether we're in a back-to-back or if we have two or three days rest. Washington, they thumped us. The competed harder and better. We go what we deserved.
Get ready for practice at 1pm tomorrow fellas. Other observations from tonight:

  • First possession became an omen for the rest of the game. A turnover on a post entry pass lead to a fast break layup that David Harrison appeared to block cleanly but was ruled a goal tend. That was the first of 24 turnovers that led to 35 points for the Wiz. The ultimate indicator of a Pacers loss is in the turnover column.
  • David Harrison had an opportunity to step up tonight starting in JO's absence. With 11:58 in the first quarter he had foul one and then went to the bench with two fouls at 8:48.
  • With Caron Butler, Antawn Jamison, and Gilbert Arenas the Wizards have an exciting trio to work around. They are a pleasure to watch (unless of course they're drubbing your team).
  • Pacers were within one with 4:30 left in the second quarter. Despite the score the Wizards appeared in command and proved it the rest of the way, leading by 15 at the half and over 30 in the second half.
  • Arenas finished off the half with 9 points, including a drive through all five of the Pacers. He looked like Reggie Bush knifing his way through traffic for a layup. Then he followed that drive up with a 4 point play (oops, JT). He kept it going long enough to knock out the Pacers, scoring 40 points in three quarters.
  • A preseason game broke out in the fourth quarter with the game settled.

So, the Pacers head home 3-2 to face Dwight Howard and the Orlando Magic on Friday.

(Photo: NBAE/Getty)

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