Apr 9, 2014; Milwaukee, WI, USA; Indiana Pacers forward Chris Copeland (22) congratulated with teammates after scoring the game winning shot during the fourth quarter against the Milwaukee Bucks at BMO Harris Bradley Center. The Pacers won 104-102. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Hanisch-USA TODAY Sports

Indiana Pacers Bench Defeats the Milwaukee Bucks


 

Chris Copeland hit the game winner as the Indiana Pacers reserve unit earned a much needed win on the road. The Pacers knocked off the Milwaukee Bucks, 104-102.

The Bucks are the worst team in the league, but the Pacers did something they haven’t done in over a month: have fun on the court. The starters played the role of cheerleaders all night long, and no one was more excited that Lance Stephenson who tackled Copeland after the final buzzer went off.

Even Roy Hibbert was laughing and having a good time.

Copeland had a season high 18 points in just 17 minutes of play. He was 7-for-8 from the field, including shooting 4-for-5 from the three point line.

The starting lineup included Luis Scola, Evan Turner, Ian Mahinmi, Donald Sloan, and Rasual Butler. Multiple players scored season highs tonight in extended minutes.

Scola led the team with 24 points. He seemed to get his confidence back, shooting 11-for-17 from the field. He also hauled in nine rebounds and dished out three assists.

Turner shot 50-percent from the field with a season high in a Pacers uniform at 23 points. Tuner nearly had himself a triple-double as well with nine assists and seven rebounds.

Butler had a dismal shooting night, just 3-for-14, but was effective on the defensive end with two blocks.

CJ Watson finally made his return to the court, but only played 17 minutes. He had just eight points, but managed two steals. He also turned the ball over three times, proving he still has some rust to work off.

We can continue to debate coach Frank Vogel’s decision to rest the starters, but the Pacers pulled off an impressive win (even though it was against inferior talent). That basically makes his decision irrelevant.

More importantly, the Miami Heat lost this evening, which gives the Pacers a half game lead in the Eastern Conference for the number one seed.

Vogel has stated that the starters will be back for Friday’s match-up in Miami. Hopefully the rest will re-energize them and give them what they need to pull off the upset.

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Tags: Chris Copeland CJ Watson Evan Turner Featured Indiana Pacers Luis Scola Popular

  • vali36

    Great win! But it’s no longer about the number one seed. This team is totally fatigued, absolutely exhausted, Spent. I would continue to rest the starters, in forfeit number one seed. What people forget is that this team plays defense at such a high level that they expend far far more energy in a regular season game then their opponents do. High level defense and intensity is why they have the best record in the east; end it’s all been on the starters…. Right now they need rest, or it will be a short postseason.

  • Ian

    I think the bench taught the starters a lesson about ball movement. 26 assists!