Instant analysis: Pacers 93, Wizards 73

Instant analysis: Pacers 93, Wizards 73
November 29, 2013, 10:15 pm
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Wittman: "We didn't play very well"

Already short-handed without Bradley Beal and Al Harrington, the Wizards went into Indianapolis to play the league's best team without their best post player, too.

Nene's sore right Achilles forced him to miss his third game as the Wizards (7-9) couldn't get their offense going and suffered their worst loss of the season.

They were held to 14 points in the first quarter, a season-low in overall points, and the No. 2 team in fast-break points with almost 19 per game finished with zero.

John Wall had his worst game of the season as the Pacers kept him out of the lane and trapped him high on pick-and-rolls. He shot 4-or-14 for eight points, nine assists and three turnovers. The last time these teams played a season ago, Wall lit up the Pacers for 37 points. 

Jan Vesely started in place of Nene but didn't attempt a shot and didn't score in 20 minutes. 

[RELATED: Nene to miss game, Vesely starts]

Wall didn't make his first field goal until 6:14 remained in the second quarter to cap a 10-0 run. The Wizards cut what had been a 14-point deficit to 38-34 after Trevor Booker put back a miss from Garrett Temple. 

They would never be that close again. The Wizards had three turnovers following Booker's bucket and were fortunate to trail just 43-36 at halftime.

Ironically, the Pacers shot 36% from the field. The Wizards were at 43%.

Roy Hibbert was scored 10 of his 13 points in the third quarter when he made 4 of 5 shots and the Pacers pulled away for good. 

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Paul George led all scorers with 23 points on 10 of 19 shooting, four rebounds, four assists and four steals. The Wizards only had two players reach double figures scoring, led by Marcin Gortat with 17 and Trevor Ariza with 14.

Turning point: Although the Wizards got off to a quick lead as Ariza and Martell Webster made three-pointers, the Pacers ended the first quarter with a 17-4 run. Turnovers by the second unit, Eric Maynor and two by Garrett Temple, fueled the run. 

Best in show: Gortat. He had to carry the load without Nene offensively, but it was his defense that made him stand out. He held Hibbert to no field goals in the first half and sent him to the bench with 3:22 left in the third quarter by drawing his fourth foul. Gortat finished with a team-high 17 points on 6 of 12 shooting, 10 rebounds and a blocked shot. 

Waking up: Maynor came alive and helped the Wizards stay in it early. He had two turnovers late in the first quarter that translated into five points for the Pacers as they led 28-14 going into the second. Maynor made three of the next four field goals the Wizards took, including a three-pointer with C.J. Watson in his face, to cut the deficit  to 35-26. Maynor finished 3-for-4 shooting for eight points. But in just nine minutes of play, he had four turnovers.  

Key stat: The reserves had 13 points in the first half but none in the pivotal third quarter.

From the locker room: "We've lost Bradley along with (Nene), your leading scorer and everything. That's no excuse. It happens to every team in the league. You lose a guy, a guy goes out, guys got to step in. … It's not an excuse. Indiana beat us tonight. It had nothing to do with who is available." -- Wizards coach Randy Wittman

"We're turning the ball over too much. We're trying to do too much. Sometimes we should focus on playing simple basketball. If you turn the ball over against a team like that, against a team who plays basketball so good you're going to get punished. ... We didn't have our transition (game). That's our strong (suit), run the ball, get some defensive stops, get a rebound and run. We didn't do it. It was really hard to win." -- Gortat

Around the bend: The Wizards returned to D.C. after the game and will play their fifth set of back-to-backs Saturday vs. the Atlanta Hawks at Verizon Center (CSN, 7 p.m. ET).

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