Well, the Jazz made it interesting at the end. But sadly, still a loss.
* * *
So the Jazz played Elijah Millsap more than 10 minutes ... just a couple days after calling him up to The Association. The Jazz also started Joe Ingles at SF. So obviously, the team was not exactly a juggernaut of superstar names. Nor was Indiana, of course, in this Season Sans George. In a way, the box score would look like a bit of a "Who's practice squad can beat the other team's practice squad" kind of matchup to most fans around the world.
The Jazz were helped, of course, by the fact that Trevor Booker has decided to go for a mohawk hair do ... which will always have a special place in our hearts thanks to my favorite post-John/Karl guy:
Indiana got a double-digit lead in the first quarter. It wasn't the starting lineup of three non-starters, though. They did okay. The quarter was really lost when the not-really-subs were subbed into the game. It got pretty ugly right then.
The Jazz whittled away at the deficit, even cutting it to just 4 points with about eight minutes left in the game. But then they blinked and were down by double digits just two minutes later. They whittled away some more, cutting it to only 1 point when Favors hit two FT's with nine seconds left. But CJ, sporting his Man-Beard, hit two pressure FT's right after, and that was really it.
The Jazz were led by:
- Derrick Favors (27-11-1-1-2)
- Gordon Hayward (24-7-3, plus a block)
- Rudy Gobert (11-4, plus 3 blocks)
- Joe Ingles (8-9-7-2, including a steal at the end that gave the Jazz just a sliver of hope)
- Trevor Booker (12-4-1-1)
The Pacers were led by
- Roy Hibbert (22-8-2)
- Luis Scola (16 points)
- Lots of effective contributions from everybody else
- Except for Lavoy Allen, who was bribed by his cousin Diana to clank 7 of 8 shots. Way to use your tuition money for the good of the team, Diana!
It didn't help that the Pacers only missed two FT's all night. We could have used Man-Beard CJ missing one or two at the end.
* * *
Note: Luis Scola looks kinda like Enes Kanter, if Enes grew his hair into a greasy black mop. But don't do that Enes ... cuz Scola is really ugly.
* * *
Twitter Note: I'm always amused by the Tweets streaming at the bottom of the broadcast. My favorite was the "Don't let this game slip away" tweet with 50 seconds left.
Let's do some definitions here:
The game slipped away: When a team has lead big the entire game but the inexplicably collapses in the last few minutes and a sure win turns into a surprising loss.
You don't let a game slip away in which you haven't led since leading 6-4 in the first quarter. In fact, the Pacers were the ones who were in danger of letting the game slip away.
I know everyone is now feeling very enlightened and ready to shake my hand in thanks for this wonderful vocabulary lesson. Test on Friday!