At no point did the Pacers lead in the opening half, but once the second half began they began to take control.
While so much focus has been on Stephenson's arrival, George has had two of his best games of the season, following the 43-point near triple-double (nine rebounds, nine assists) in a 135-130 double-overtime loss in Cleveland Sunday with 35 points and 10 rebounds as the Pacers (38-40) moved past Miami (37-40) into eighth place.
The Raptors took exception to Stephenson's stat padding as several players got into his face and started jawing with the Pacers forward.
"He shot a layup when the game was over, you know, that's disrespect to the game", DeRozan said. "I was caught in the moment", said Lance". After this incident with Stephenson, I'm sure Raptor fans would love a chance to play the Pacers in round one. Ibaka said. "He told me earlier, one time I passed him the ball and told him to finish it and he passed it back to me and asked my why I didn't finish it?" They just make everything easy for me since Day 1. "It's all 6", said George, referring to Stephenson's jersey number.
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Neither DeRozan nor Tucker was in a forgiving mood with what Stephenson did to end the game. "That's not the way you win. A couple of guys are banged up and what not, so whenever you can get that rest it's definitely beneficial for us". He was instrumental in the Pacers' dominant fourth quarter, in which in outscored Toronto 31-15 to pull away for a pivotal win. I don't think he meant to embarrass anyone.
Dwane Casey spoke on how teams such as the Pacers, Pistons and Heat would bring their best, summon all they have, how the Raptors had to match the opposition's desperation, how every possession would be critical.
The Pacers now sit in the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference while the Raptors are third.
Lance Stephenson made his presence known in more ways than one in his first home game during his second stint in Indiana. "When he was in the locker room and I addressed that, he knew that". Jonas Valanciunas is the third double-digit scorer and Cory Joseph is dishing 3.4 assists. "But I just wanted to say sorry, and I didn't mean no hard feelings from it". The Pacers are his third team of the 2016-17 season alone, but IN is where Stephenson feels at home. They're going back to what worked, only it's what worked a few years ago. However, don't order refreshments for your playoff viewing just yet.
Detroit played two home games last week, losing on a last-second tip-in to Miami and edging Brooklyn by a point. The Pacers clawed their way to a 77-75 lead heading into the fourth despite 20 third quarter points from DeRozan.