Pacers Have Been Hammered By The Mavericks in NBA

Four observations: Pacers hammered by Mavericks to fall to 2-2 in NBA Summer League

The Pacers lost 112-91 to the Dallas Mavericks on Friday night at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, falling to 2-2 in the NBA Summer League.

The loss assures that the Pacers will not be one of the four teams that reach the four-team playoff. They have one game remaining on Sunday, but the time of the game and their opponent has not yet been determined.

Here are four observations.

The Pacers’ shooting was brutal

The absence of second- and third-year players Bennedict Mathurin, Andrew Nembhard and Isaiah Jackson, who were shut down for the event after the first two games, has been evident on both ends, but particularly obvious on offense where the Pacers haven’t had a lot of scoring options.

On Friday, the Pacers went through even longer scoring droughts than they had Wednesday. They fell behind 48-33 at halftime, making just 13 of 41 field goal attempts (31.7%) and 4 of 18 from 3-point range. The second half was just slightly better, but they still finished 36 of 83 (43.4%) and 10 of 36 from 3-point range.

Indiana couldn’t keep the ball out of the paint

The Pacers’ first two wins were keyed by defense, and having Andrew Nembhard and Isaiah Jackson on the floor particularly helped them on that end. Nembhard was one of the Pacers’ top perimeter defenders last season and Jackson was one of the best rim protectors, finishing second on the team in blocks behind Myles Turner.

But without them, they’ve struggled to keep the ball out of the paint, giving up 58 points there Wednesday and another 60 on Friday. The Mavericks seemed to have no problem getting to the rim on dribble drives and screen-and-rolls.

Ben Sheppard had some moments

Since a quiet first game, rookie Ben Sheppard has had a string of steady performances, and Friday he was one of the Pacers’ few productive players and one of the only ones who showed any shooting stroke.

Sheppard hit 7 of his 13 field goals and 5 of his 10 3-pointers to finish with 19 points. He also grabbed two rebounds and added two assists and a steal.

Kendall Brown did too

Former Baylor wing Kendall Brown missed much of last season with an injury and only got so much out of the first year of his two-way deal, but he’s given the Pacers reason in Las Vegas to believe he can be more valuable this year.

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