Pacers dominate Hornets to set up game against Wizards for No. 8 seed
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Indiana Pacers forward Domantas Sabonis was happy with the attitude his team showed on Tuesday night against the Charlotte Hornets. The Pacers hosted the Hornets in a play-in tournament game and took care of the business as they dominated Charlotte 144-117 to progress into the next stage of the play-in tournament.
The Pacers came out strong, having dropped 40 points on the Hornets in the opening quarter. At halftime, the Pacers had a comfortable lead as they were up 24 points on the Hornets. Sabonis had a huge game as he finished just short of a triple-double.
Sabonis, who sat out the fourth quarter during a blowout win over the Hornets, finished the game with 14 points, 21 rebounds and nine assists. "We came out great. Everybody was connected," Sabonis said. "I feel like we're clicking more and more every game.
The ball is moving, and that's the most important part."
Malcolm Brogdon and Sabonis had good games
Pacers star guard Brogdon, who was playing his first game since April 29 because of a hamstring issue, finished with 16 points and eight assists.
"I was always conscious of my hamstring," Brogdon said. "When you're dealing with hamstring issues, it can be dangerous, so there is a bit of hesitation when you're out there of things you're not gonna do. Like tonight, I wasn't gonna go for any rebounds in the crowd.
I'm not jumping as high as I can. Consciously and unconsciously, you're thinking of stuff to avoid. But overall, I felt good. I felt good. I'm glad we got the win." Pacers coach Nate Bjorkgren was also happy with the attitude his team showed.
"I liked the energy we had, especially on the defensive end," Bjorkgren said. "In the first half of that game, I thought our team defense was very well connected. I thought we were very physical. I thought we were very good on the glass, especially in that first half.
But just overall, the way that the guys competed tonight and the movement and the way they shared it on the offensive end, it was good to be a part of." The Pacers will take on the Washington Wizards on Thursday, in a game that will decide who will be the No.
8 seed in the Eastern Conference. "We just have to come with the same intensity," Pacers' Oshae Brissett said. "I feel like we did a great job of setting the tone early and hitting them first and not really letting up. We did that throughout the whole game; but really, that first five to 10 minutes, we went at them and we didn't hold back. We have to do the same thing Thursday against whoever we play."