Outside of the Miami Heat it was expected that the Indiana Pacers would be the Brooklyn Nets toughest challenge in the East this season and they have proven to be yet again as they swept the season series against them with a close 97-96 win over the Nets in Indiana on Saturday.
Shaun Livingston led the team with 24 points, Joe Johnson, Paul Pierce, Deron Williams and Kevin Garnett were all in double figures. KG also had 10 rebounds. They shot 44.2 percent as a group and forced 23 turnovers. Unfortunately, they were dominated on the glass and were out-rebounded 46-27. The Pacers had 10 more points in the paint and 11 more second chance points.
This was close all the way until the end. There were nine different lead chances and the game was tied seven times. The Pacers biggest lead was an 11-point lead in the third, but they never led by more than seven points at any other time. It was a one point difference after one, at the half, and at the end of the game.
The Nets never led in the fourth quarter though. They tried. Johnson hit a three to cut it to 94-93 and D-Will hit another three to cut it to 97-96, but they could not get over the hump.