NBA Playoffs 2011: Danny Granger Helps Pacers Avoid a Bulls Sweep
If you’re looking to hand out credit for the Indiana Pacers’ sweep-avoiding win over the Chicago Bulls on Saturday, you can go a couple of ways. Indiana big man Roy Hibbert was a monster. A gimpy Derrick Rose had a nightmare game. Still, if you’re looking for the biggest reason there will be a Game 5 in the Windy City on Tuesday night, look no further than the Pacers’ No. 33 Danny Granger.
Oh, you didn’t know Granger wore No. 33? Don’t beat yourself up too bad. Most folks don’t know that the guy’s already cracked the top 100 in career three-pointers made or that he had nine games of 30-plus points this past season either. But if you saw him in action today, you got hints to what you’ve been missing. Mid-range jumpers. Strong finishes at the cup. Clutch free throws. Morning headlines will gush about his 24 points, but the sub header ought to say something about the suffocating defense he played on Luol Deng and Carlos Boozer for four do-or-die quarters.
Granger spoke to reporters after the game.
"The mentality is play it like it's the last game you ever play in your life. We played like that tonight."
Who knows if this one game will prevent the Pacers from being the Bulls’ eventual stepping stone? The only thing we’re pretty certain of is that, with a few more clutch performances like today’s showing, Danny Granger won’t help but step more into the NBA spotlight.
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