Glenn Robinson III Makes Season Debut, Pacers Throttle Hawks
Joe Robbins | Getty Images
INDIANAPOLIS – Returning from the All-Star break on Friday night, the Indiana Pacers looked like a team determined to show their first half of the season was no fluke.
The Pacers beat the lowly Atlanta Hawks, 116-93, on Friday night.
With a 34-25 record, Indiana is now 9 games above .500 for the first time since the end of the 2013-14 season.
Friday’s contest saw the season debut of Glenn Robinson III.
After missing the first 58 games of the season with a left ankle injury, GRIII received 19 minutes of action on Friday, scoring 4 points on 2-of-6 shooting. He added 2 rebounds and 1 assist.
“I felt great,” GRIII said after his season debut. “I thought I started off really good with the team, getting stops and we had a good second unit. We looked to run and looked to push it and that’s the style of basketball we want to play. So, I think that I can help bring that to the team.”
With GRIII now involved in the rotation, Friday was another example of the Pacers’ impressive balance.
Domantas Sabonis led the scoring with 21 points and 13 rebounds off the bench. Forward Thaddeus Young had 20 points.
It was a tough night shooting the basketball for Victor Oladipo (5-of-16, for 14 points). The All-Star did toss in 9 assists and 7 rebounds.
Atlanta (18-42) was down just 2 points early in the second quarter, before the Pacers went on a 13-1 run to extend their lead to 44-30. They led by at least 9 points the rest of the game.
Indiana had 30 assists and also achieved one of its major goals going into the second half of the year.
The Pacers outrebounded Atlanta by 17 (recording a season-high 57 rebounds). After an 11-game stretch in which they were outrebounded in each of those contests, Indiana has won the backboards in 4 straight games, by an average of 12.5 rebounds.
The Friday win for the Pacers pushed their home record to 21-11 on the season. They have now guaranteed a winning record on their home court for a 29th consecutive season, the longest active streak in the NBA.
What’s Next: The Pacers (35-24) are now heading on a 4-game road swing: Dallas (Monday), Atlanta (Wednesday), Milwaukee (Friday) and Washington (Sunday).