NBA Game Recap: Pacers 111 – Timberwolves 88

I will save you the personal misery of reading a long-winded recap of another gutless performance by our injury-depleted and mentally defeated Timberwolves, so I will keep this one short. Traveling to Indianapolis without the likes of Kevin Love, Ricky Rubio, Darko Milicic, and Luke Ridnour, the Timberpups suffered their second worst loss of the season to the Indiana Pacers by a score of 111-88. The Pacers currently sit at third in the Eastern Conference standings and have emerged as a contender behind the likely Coach of the Year Frank Vogel.

Brad Miller made his likely final appearance in front of his hometown Indy crowd and received a gracious round of applause from the spotty crowd last night. The Wolves 13 first quarter points was the lowest first quarter total for the Pups this season, and their 30 first half points was the lowest first half point total of the season. The T-Wolves faced their largest deficit of the season when they trailed by 37 late in the second quarter, and trailed 64-30 at halftime.

This game came down to defense and effort. To give the Wolves credit, they simply do not have the personnel to contend with great teams like Indiana on the road. The Pacers outrebounded the Wolves 58-45 and dominated them in transition, beating them down the floor and exploiting them for their lack of hustle. Indiana swung the ball well in their half court offense and created numerous open shots for teammates. As a team, Indiana netted 11 of their 25 three-point attempts, and Danny Granger personally hit 5 of his 7 attempts from beyond the arc. Paul George was fantastic and is a future NBA All Star, and he finished with 18 points on 5-9 shooting (2-2 from three, 6-6 from the line) and 5 rebounds in only 25 minutes.

Anthony Randolph was unable to take advantage of his first start of the season, and shot just 1-7 from the field while being in foul trouble for most of the contest. AR-15 needed a big showing tonight in order to convince Mr. Kahn to resign him this summer, but his poor performance last night will surely hinder his case.

It was nice to see Brad Miller have a good game for what was likely the last time in front of his hometown crowd, and he was able to play 25 minutes while possessing a +4 in a game that culminated as a 23 point defeat. At this point in the season, the Wolves are up against about as much adversity as they ever have been, and they are going to need to bust their tails on the defensive end if they are to win again this season. The Pups continued their April drought, and have not won in the month since April 8, 2009 when they won in Golden State.