Victor Oladipo scored 28 points, grabbed six rebounds and dished out six assists to lead a balanced offensive effort that sparked Indiana to a 109-94 win over Utah on Monday night.
Five players scored in double figures for the Pacers and Al Jefferson added a team-high 10 rebounds off the bench. Indiana won for the fifth time in the last six games. The Pacers made it rain from outside, going 14-of-26 from the perimeter.
Donovan Mitchell had 23 points to lead Utah. Derrick Favors chipped in 16 points and seven rebounds for the Jazz while Rodney Hood added 15 points off the bench. Utah shot just 9-of-33 from 3-point range and totaled 11 assists on 35 baskets in a sluggish offensive effort.
Bad offense started with an ugly first quarter that put the Jazz in a double-digit hole. Utah committed six turnovers in the first nine minutes and missed multiple open field goal attempts from the perimeter toward the end of the quarter. The Jazz went just 1-of-7 from outside in the first quarter.
It opened the door for the Pacers to surge ahead for good.
Indiana built a 31-21 lead heading into the second quarter after Cory Joseph knocked down a 33-foot buzzer beater. The Pacers led by as many as 15 before halftime, going up 38-23 after Joe Young drilled a 3-pointer.
Utah ripped off 14 unanswered points to get back in the game. Mitchell capped off the spurt with a running hook shot that cut Indiana’s lead to 38-37. The Pacers countered with a 18-5 run, highlighted by back-to-back baskets from Oladipo and later Thaddeus Young that pushed Indiana’s lead to 56-42.
The Pacers kept it rolling after halftime. Oladipo capped off a 11-2 third-quarter opening run with a 3-pointer and a pair of free throws, giving Indiana a 69-49 lead. Utah never cut the deficit to single digits after that point.
—Field Level Media