Indiana Stays Hot, Routs Minnesota Pacers Continue Best Start in Franchise History

Article excerpt

The Indiana Pacers aren't letting anybody keep up with the Georges.

Certainly not Monday night.

George Hill took care of the early work, scoring a season-high 26 points, and Paul George closed it out by scoring 11 of his 26 points during a decisive second-half stretch that finally allowed Indiana to pull away from visiting Minnesota, 98-84.

"We just don't rely on one person to do all the work," Hill said. "We have multiple people who can make plays, who can play defense and things like that. We just continue to work together. We don't know who's night it's going to be. All we know is we have one common goal and that's to win the game."

The Pacers are doing that at a record-setting pace this season.

After opening with nine consecutive wins, they've followed their only loss with four more wins. They're now 8-0 at home for the first time in franchise history, off to the best start in franchise history and 3-0 against the Western Conference.

Monday's win followed a familiar script. Indiana used a suffocating defense, a balanced offense and a strong bench and to put away scrappy Minnesota.

But Hill and George proved to be too much.

Hill dominated the first half, scoring 12 points as the Pacers took a 20-6 first-quarter lead. George took care of the rest, spurring the game-changing run that finally gave Indiana some breathing room in the second half.

Together, they went 19 of 29 from the field and 7 of 8 on 3- pointers. Hill finished with seven assists, five steals and three rebounds, while George had eight rebounds, four assists and four steals.

"It's great, we're playing together, we're making smart plays," Lance Stephenson said after scoring 13 points. …


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