Our main man Charlie Widdoes will have the full breakdown of what went wrong in Indiana, but here’s the Lob City Ledger over at ESPNLA.com for now:
Griffin gets fouled an awful lot, but it’s incredible he’s still offended by contact given his performances at the free throw line. Despite the rough free throw shooting, Griffin was the Clippers’ only reliable option offensively down on the block. With Indiana not double-teaming very often, Griffin was turned into a pure scorer as opposed to the skilled playmaker he typically is.
Paul was abnormally aggressive early on and attacked slow-footed Indiana center Roy Hibbert at every turn to kick off a nice first quarter for the Clippers. Like smart teams do, though, the Pacers adjusted and forced the ball out of Paul’s hands by shutting off driving lanes to the rim. Paul is incredible, but he can’t force the action all four quarters.
Although he missed some open looks on the wing he’ll normally make, Young looked solid in his first start in a Clippers uniform. When directly challenged, Young did a nice job of fighting over screens and using his height to his advantage. No one is going to mistake Young for a defensive stopper, but he might have to be for the Clippers to have a chance.
You won’t find many bench duos more irritating than Reggie Evans and Kenyon Martin, but Lou Amundson and Tyler Hansbrough changed the game early on by being, well, more annoying. Hansbrough’s garbage man act was impressive, but his ability to get under the skin of both Griffin and Paul in the third quarter was the moment when the Clippers completely lost their composure.
Although both teams feature one-dimensional players off the bench, Indiana coach Frank Vogel did a great job of maximizing his talent. The Clippers looked lost without Paul in the second quarter when Indiana took its initial lead. Even with CP3 on the floor, the Clips were often caught playing 2-on-5, which is something the Pacers rarely resorted to in their blowout win.