Washington, D.C. - The Indiana Pacers were able to close out their second-round playoff series with the Washington Wizards tonight with a 93-80 win. Indiana lost on their home floor in Game 5 in embarrassing fashion, and they were motivated to come out and take care of business and not allow a Game 7. This win sets up another edition of the Miami Heat vs. Pacers conference finals.
There was quite a bit of late drama in the game, as the Wizards stormed back in the fourth quarter and even took a 74-73 lead off of a Bradley Beal three-pointer. The Pacers then responded with a 14-2 run that put the game away, and coasted to the easy victory down the stretch. Indiana’s experience showed up in a big way in the fourth quarter, while the Wizards showed the inexperience that concerned many analysts coming into the series.
David West powered the Pacers this evening with 29 points on 13-26 shooting. He showed leadership and a desire to close out the series that hasn’t been seen from the Pacers in awhile. Lance Stephenson also came through with a much needed performance, scoring 17 points to go along with eight assists and five rebounds. Paul George scored 12 points, while both George Hill and Roy Hibbert ended with 11.
Washington was led by another big game from Marcin Gortat, who scored 19 points, while Beal chipped in with 16 of his own. Nene Hilario scored 15 points, but the biggest disappointment for the Wizards was another poor performance from point guard John Wall. He scored just 12 points to go along with nine assists, but shot 5-16 from the floor.
Indiana showed the veteran experience that they have learned over the past couple seasons, and they’re ready to move on to their upcoming series with Miami. They have faced quite a bit of adversity throughout the first two playoff series’ and it won’t get easier against the best team they have faced yet. There is definitely reason for Pacers fans to be excited and celebrate, but they have to get back down to business on Sunday afternoon at 3:30 P.M.