When your favorite team is up by 14 points with 1:53 left in the first quarter you are probably thinking to yourself that this is going to be a good game. When your favorite team is up by 14 points with 10:16 remaining in the second quarter you probably still think to yourself it is going to be a good game. When your favorite team leads the best Eastern Conference team at halftime you think to yourself that you aren’t ever going to leave the couch this game. Although, you forgot how fast your favorite team can go to your least favorite team in a time span of five minutes.
Eric Gordon led the New Orleans Pelicans into his home state by scoring 21 points, grabbing 6 rebounds, and dishing out 2 assists. Gordon was born in Indiana, went to high school in Indiana, and even played his college ball at the University of Indiana.
Unfortunately, the New Orleans Pelicans (15-17) couldn’t get the win, losing to the Indiana Pacers (26-6), 99-82. It was a tale of two halves for the Pelicans. They lead by 14 points twice in the first half, but they trailed by 22 points in the second half.
The Pelicans first quarter was one of the best quarters of the season for them. Only committed 3 turnovers, led by as many as 14 points, Eric Gordon had 9 points, and Alexis Ajinca shot 100% from the field. Gordon was making cuts to the basket and his teammates were feeding him great passes in the paint. Al-Farouq Aminu scored the first two Pelican points of the second quarter with a jump shot that put the Pelicans up, 29-17. Aminu finished the game with 8 points, 4 rebounds, and 3 assists.
Ajinca started for the second game in a row for the Pelicans. He had an adequate second quarter. Making some important free throws, had couple key rebounds, and played good minutes. Although, he made some childish fouls and he didn’t play his best defense. Ajinca finished the game with career high 17 points and 7 rebounds. At the break the Pelicans led the Pacers by 5 points, 49-44. Gordon finished the first half with 17 points, 6 boards, and 2 assists. Paul George scored 11 points, 6 boards, and 1 assist in the first half for the Pacers.
The Pacers are consider to be one of the most dominate third quarter teams this season and tonight they showed the crowd why. With 6:05 left in the third quarter the Pacers took a 1-point lead and never looked backed. The Pacers then went on an 18-0 scoring run. With 2:56 left in the third quarter, Monty Williams took a timeout to try to pump up his squad. Going into the timeout Anthony Davis said something that the refs didn’t like and was rewarded with a technical foul. Anthony Davis finished the game with 10 points and 8 rebounds. The Pelicans aren’t going to win many games by shooting 25% in a quarter and that was their shooting percentage in the third quarter. Gordon only scored 2 points in the third quarter and that’s a big reason why the Pelicans fell behind by so many points. In the first two quarters he was cutting to the rim and taking the ball to the hole, but in the third quarter he was unable to do so. The Pacers took the lead into the fourth quarter by 13 points, 74-61.
The Pacers biggest lead came in the fourth quarter, when they led by 22 points. The Pelicans couldn’t get anything going in the fourth quarter and it wasn’t a pretty second half for them. The Pelicans had a solid 5-point lead going into halftime, but they just don’t have any player that can take over a game for them. All the top teams in the NBA have that one player who can just take over the game and win games for the team. I would really like to see the Pelicans make a trade before the deadline passes, they have plenty of time to do so, but they need to be thinking about bringing in someone. Pelicans need to have better decision-making skills in close game situations. They were being careless with the basketball and you won’t win many basketball games with that mentality.
Pelicans have another tough game coming up in 3 days when they take on the Miami Heat. This four game road trip has been tough, but hopefully they can play two solid halves of basketball and get the win.