Chicago Bulls vs. Indiana Pacers: Live Score, Results and Game Highlights
The Indiana Pacers met the Chicago Bulls for the third time this season, and they ended up with the same result as their first two meetings. Indiana won 97-92.
Keys to the Game
While the Indiana Pacers led most of the way through this one, it mattered little in the end as the Bulls shot their way back into the game and were able to make things interesting by the time we were down to the final minutes.
Chicago was able to stay afloat while missing three-pointers left and right by forcing Indiana turnovers and forcing Paul George to take jump shots. George made just four of his 14 shots tonight thanks to Luol Deng's suffocating defense.
However, late in the fourth with Noah still on the bench and Deng playing power forward, he just didn't have the strength to cover David West, who ended up getting loose time and time again, leading to his huge fourth quarter and his big night overall.
Pair that with Marco Belinelli's poor defense on George Hill, whose fourth quarter was equally impressive, and Chicago just couldn't break down Indiana's brick wall of a lead.
The Pacers were able to pound the paint all night long, getting 31 points from West and 18 points from Roy Hibbert to really open up the floor for their shooters. When those shooters missed, they just went back to the paint.
On top of that, they were able to handily out-rebound Chicago, leading to multiple second chances and limiting Chicago to one shot.
Without Derrick Rose, Chicago has to yield the title of best team in the Central Division to the Pacers.
Pacers 97, Bulls 92, Final.
Let's take a look at tonight's box score. First the Pacers:
And the Bulls:
Pacers 97, Bulls 92, Final.
Marco Belinelli shoots a wild leaner with nine seconds left. The rebound goes out of bounds, but Chicago muffs the inbound play with Indiana recovering.
Pacers 95, Bulls 92 with :01 left in the fourth.
George Hill misses two freebies, because of course he would.
Pacers 95, Bulls 92 with 0:13 left in the fourth.
Jimmy Butler hit's a three-pointer to bring this one within three-points. I'm counting all these chickens before they're out of their eggs.
Pacers 95, Bulls 92 with 0:19 left in the fourth.
Noah gets no call on his shot in the paint, so Chicago is forced to start fouling. It seems that the fat lady is practicing her scales right now.
Pacers 95, Bulls 89 with 0:25 left in the fourth.
Magnificent defense from the Pacers forces a 24-second violation by the Bulls. What an excellent back-and-forth we've got going here.
Then David West gets his own rebound and puts in a bucket that could ice this one.
Pacers 94, Bulls 89 with 0:32 left in the fourth.
Belinelli gets blocked on a quick shot, but then knocks the ball free, gets down court and puts in a layup.
Free throws coming for George Hill momentarily.
Pacers 90, Bulls 89 with 1:16 left in the fourth.
David West keeps it going for the Pacers, but Noah finds Deng cutting, who dunks on and is fouled by Roy Hibbert.
Pacers 90, Bulls 87 with 2:16 left in the fourth.
Of course, sometimes jumpers fall, like a wide-open Belinelli three-pointer.
They've got Roy Hibbert doing work in the post, however.
Pacers 88, Bulls 85 with 3:14 left in the fourth.
Indiana's doing a great job of keeping that lead a wall. They're forcing jumpers and boxing out, just letting Jimmy Butler get loose a bit here and there.
Pacers 86, Bulls 82 with 4:13 left in the fourth.
Luol Deng overplays David West as West turns off Deng and gets an easy layup.
Pacers 82, Bulls 80 with 5:42 left in the fourth.
Roy Hibbert with the biggest bail-out foul possible as Jimmy Butler shoots a deep two with an expiring shot clock.
Pacers 80, Bulls 80 with 6:50 left in the fourth.
Joakim Noah has sat down. I repeat. Joakim Noah is on the bench.
Pacers 79, Bulls 78 with 7:28 left in the fourth.
Paul George's floater goes off the back of the rim, the ball bounces back to him and his subsequent layup goes off the back of the rim.
Did anybody tell George to show up in this one? He's been incredibly poor tonight.
Pacers 77, Bulls 75 with 8:25 left in the fourth.
George Hill three-pointer and a timeout from Tibodeau. He's trying to slow down the bleeding earlier than he could back in the first quarter.
Pacers 77, Bulls 72 with 9:29 left in the fourth.
The ball game is tied for the first time since the first quarter thanks to six points from Deng to start the fourth.
George Hill then kills the jubilation with a jumper.
Pacers 74, Bulls 72 with 9:46 left in the fourth.
A Paul George three-pointer is countered with a Luol Deng dunk all over George's noggin. Oh, with the assist from The King of the Extra Pass.
Pacers 72, Bulls 70 with 10:46 left in the fourth.
David West is continuing to lead the way for the Pacers, and they've needed every single point from him tonight. He's leading with 21, Roy Hibbert has 17 points and seven rebounds, while George Hill has 10.
Chicago counters after big quarters from their two leading scorers. Marco Belinelli's got 15 points while Joakim Noah has 14 points, seven rebounds and three assists. They've also got nine from Jimmy Butler and seven from Nazr Mohammed.
Pacers 69, Bulls 66 at the start of the third.
We have a new king in the realm. Joakim Noah, King of the Extra Pass.
Pacers 69, Bulls 66 after the third.
Noah, visibly exhausted, fights for a rebound on offense and loses, sprints back, forces the Indiana miss in the lane, grabs the rebound, chucks it down to Belinelli for an easy bucket, tips a ball leading to a steal and sprints back on offense.
He's only got one gear, regardless of his condition.
Pacers 65, Bulls 61 with 1:09 left in the third.
Bulls once again having some problems by leaving Mohammed and Radmanovic on the bench too long— Sam Smith (@SamSmithHoops) March 4, 2013
Remember when Vlad Rad and Nazr Mohammed were giving solid minutes for the Bulls in the first half? Why not give them another shot now and save Joakim Noah's foot from some pain?
Thom Thibodeau with Noah and Deng is becoming like the last scene of Braveheart, with us begging him to have mercy on the rack.— Hardwood Paroxysm (@HPbasketball) March 4, 2013
Pacers 64, Bulls 56 with 3:02 left in the third.
Lance Stephenson is called for an offensive foul as Marco Belinelli runs into his back. Ladies and gentlemen, Joey Crawford.
Pacers 58, Bulls 54 with 5:05 left in the third.
David West is taking the Pacers on his back here, something we've seen happen time and time again for Indiana.
Pacers 58, Bulls 54 with 5:54 left in the third.
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