Pacers Win Final Home Game Before All-Star Break
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INDIANAPOLIS – On a night Victor Oladipo was presented his All-Star jersey, the 25-year-old shooting guard showed everyone at Bankers Life Fieldhouse why he will be busy this coming weekend.
Oladipo’s contribution on the box score was everywhere Sunday night. He scored 30 points, dished out 9 assists, pulled down 8 rebounds and recorded 6 steals, tying a franchise-record with a steal in 40 straight games.
Led once again by Oladipo, who will play in his first All-Star game this coming Sunday in Los Angeles, the Pacers held on to a comfortable second-half margin over the injured Knicks.
The 121-113 victory pushed the Pacers (32-25) seven games above .500 for the first time this season.
Not even to the All-Star break yet, and with 25 games remaining this season, the Pacers have already eclipsed the over/under of 31.5 wins set out for them in the preseason.
“It’s not difficult because there’s a bigger goal,” Oladipo says of possibly looking ahead to the All-Star break coming Thursday. “The break is great. All-Star Weekend is great but at the end of the day, we have bigger aspirations and bigger goals for this group and this season, so we have to be ready.”
A 14-2 run in Sunday’s second quarter gave the Pacers a lead they would not relinquish the rest of the way.
Playing without All-Star Kristaps Porzingis, who tore his ACL last Tuesday, Indiana dominated the backboard with a season-high 54 rebounds.
After being outrebounded in 11 straight games, the Pacers have now won the glass in back-to-back contests.
Bojan Bogdanovic scored 20 points, scoring in double figures for a 6th straight game.
Thaddeus Young added 18 points and 11 rebounds.
Indiana has now won 9 of 11 games at home. Their next home game will come a week from Friday (February 23rd) against the Atlanta Hawks.
What’s Next: The Pacers (32-25) have 1 more game remaining before the All-Star break: @Brooklyn (Wednesday).