Indianapolis (USA), May 18 (EFE) .- The Indiana Pacers beat the Charlotte Hornets 144-117 this Tuesday in the first game of the Eastern Conference play-in tournament with an outstanding performance by Canadian forward Oshae Brissett, who added 23 points.
Brissett topped the Pacers’ list of eight players who finished with double-digit shooting.
The Pacers, who had the field advantage as ninth classified at the end of the regular season, will now fight for eighth place in the playoffs that they will define in an away game that they will play on Thursday against the winner of the second play-in game. ‘That the Boston Celtics, seventh, and the Washington Wizards, eighth, are playing tonight.
Along with Brissett, who has become the winning factor of surprise for the Pacers, Lithuanian power forward Domantas Sabonis was untouchable in the inside game with a double-double of 14 points, 21 rebounds – 20 defensive – and nine assists.
Forward Doug McDermott reached 21 points, including four triples, and finished as the second highest scorer for the Pacers, who in the next game will seek to reach the playoffs in the Eastern Conference for the sixth consecutive time.
Sabonis and McDermott scored 16 of their 21 points in the first quarter and the Pacers snapped the franchise’s worst nine-game losing streak in the postseason.
The victory was Indiana’s first in the postseason since they beat the Cleveland Cavaliers in April 2018, and they got it despite the release of their starting guard, Caris LeVert, from league health and safety protocols.
The point guards, reserve TJ McConnell contributed 17 points, while starter Malcolm Brodgdon, who returned with the team, also stood out with 16 points and eight assists.
Two other reserves, guard Kelan Martin and Georgian center Goga Bitadze, also stood out in the great offensive work with the Pacers, scoring 14 points each. Bitadze finished with a double-double by grabbing 10 rebounds.
The Pacers, who have won infield in their last six games, were 16 of 35 on 3s and had 55 percent on field goals.
The Pacers bench contributed 58 points to 56 scored by the Hornets reserves, who had forward Miles Bridges as their leading scorer by contributing 23 points, with eight rebounds and four assists.
But the Charlotte team, which had center Cody Zeller as its second best scorer when scoring 17 points, captured five rebounds and recovered four balls, did not find its best scoring inspiration in shots from outside the perimeter and there ended its chances of victory. .
Guard Terry Rozier, a key player for the Hornets with triples, missed all nine attempts he had and finished with 16 points, eight rebounds and six assists, which did not prevent the defeat and elimination of the Hornets, who remain unsuccessful in the fight to be in the postseason after finishing the competition with the sixth consecutive loss.
Rookie point guard LaMelo Ball finished his first year in the NBA with 14 points and four assists, but gave his worst shooting image, missing 10 of 14 shots from the field, including four of six attempts from outside the perimeter, in his postseason debut. .
Rozier and point guard Devonte ‘Graham each finished the regular season in the league’s top 15 on 3s, but the Hornets against the Pacers had just 12 3-pointers of 40 attempts.
Charlotte’s last postseason win was in April 2016 when they beat the Miami Heat and the Michael Jordan-owned team remains undefined their rebuilding and lost the third straight game when they could have qualified.
(c) EFE Agency