The fourth quarter was tight the whole way, with Indiana's five point lead with 20 seconds to play being the largest margin between the two teams. The Wizards had the ball, down three, with about three minutes to go, when suddenly they stopped being able to find buckets. They would have five straight empty trips, and wouldn't score again until Beal hit a prayer from beyond the three point line with 11 seconds to go to cut Indiana's lead to two. West would sink both free throws to seal it though.
Roy Hibbert erased that horrible game 1 in a lot of people's minds as he exploded for a game-high 28 points on 10/13 shooting. At times, he was the only offense for the Pacers and bailed them out of some bad possessions with some nice finishes at the rim. He also had nine boards and a pair of blocks. His Washington counterpart, Marcin Gortat, tried to match him step for step as he led Washington with 21 points and 11 rebounds. For Indiana, Hill had 14 points, and Stephenson had 12 points, seven boards and five assists in the win. Beal chipped in 17 points, seven assists and five boards while Nene scored 14 for the Wizards. Wall struggled offensively, shooting 2/13 from the field for six points. He did have eight assists and just one turnover though.
Washington still holds the home court advantage, and they'll look to take advantage of that as the series shifts to Verizon Center. Game 3 is Friday night at 8pm at Verizon Center. - Jacob Raim
Third Quarter Update Gortat and Washington opened the half with the momentum but the offense went stagnant during the middle of the frame and the Pacers grabbed the lead heading into the final frame, 68-64. Gortat was responsible for most of Washington's offense, accounting for 11 of the 19 total points scored in the third. On the other side, Hibbert did not slow down, scoring seven more points for 24 total. Lance Stephenson also started to get going, hitting a pair of threes after opening the game 0-9. The game has been played at Indiana's pace all game, as Washington has struggled to get out on the break. They still have zero fast break points, something that may have to change if the Wizards are going to steal game 2. - Jacob Raim
Halftime Update Not much separated the two teams that half as the Wizards head to the break up 45-43. Neither team led by more than four for the entire second quarter as neither team could gain any kind of sustained momentum. Washington was a little more effective from the field at 47.6% compared to Indiana's 45.9% but Indiana was much better at the free throw line, going 8/8 compared to 2/6 for Washington. It was also quite a clean half, with both teams protecting the ball to the tune of just nine total turnovers and four total fast break points between the two teams.
The Pacers were led by Roy Hibbert, who had a huge first half, the antithesis of his game 1 performance. The Pacers made a concerted effort to get him the ball early and often and it paid off, as he 5/7 from the field for 17 points. Clearly Hibbert will have to be more of a defensive focus for Washington than expected in the second half. No other Pacer had more than six. Washington had a balanced attack, with all nine Wizards who have played scoring. The front line tandem of Nene and Gortat lead things with eight each, Beal has seven, while Wall has six points and four assists. Nene limped to the locker room during the first quarter but was back on the bench at the start of the second and looked none the worse for wear when he reentered the game. - Jacob Raim
First Quarter Update The Wizards withstood a quick start from Indiana to head to the second quarter tied, 23-23. Indiana opened the game on fire, feeding Hibbert early to get him into the game, as they scored the games first seven points, five of them from Hibbert. Hibbert ended the quarter with seven points, two boards and a block, a far cry from his game 1 performance. Beal led Washington with five points, as all five starts got on the score sheet. The concern for Washington was that Nene went down and limped off to the locker room, but he was back on the bench by the start of the second quarter. - Jacob Raim
We have arrived for Game 2!
The storylines are out there, but it's all business now as the Wizards look to remain undefeated on the road this postseason.
The kid Bradley Beal is gaining all sorts of national attention, and why shouldn't he be? He's been the Wizards big-shot maker late in games and has now scored at least 25 points three separate times this postseason. We'll see if Indiana makes adjustments to try and force the ball out of his hands tonight if the game is tight in the fourth quarter.
Trevor Ariza was a perfect 6/6 from downtown in Game 1, what will he have for an encore tonight?
Drew Gooden was the x-factor in Game 1, tallying his first double-double of the playoffs in only 18 minutes of action. Who will be that guy tonight? We'll have to wait and find out as we get ready for Game 2 of #WizPacers!
Here is pregame video from both coaches:
Game 2 Shootaround
Good morning from Indianapolis! Off the bus for morning shootaround #dcRising https://t.co/BCAKlOEe3fShootaround was held at the University of Indianapolis again today, same routine as Monday except today the team was in their main arena, not the practice court where they held shootaround on Monday.
— Washington Wizards (@WashWizards) May 7, 2014
Just a minor detail before another major game as we get ready for Game 2 of #WizPacers from Indiana.
The Wizards confidence should be sky high, but even if it is, they won't let onto it publicly and still answer questions the same way as they did when the playoffs began.
They are 4-0 on the road this postseason and have a chance to take a commanding 2-0 lead with a win tonight. They will return home to Verizon Center at the very least with a split and have already claimed back home court advantage, but Marcin Gortat won't be happy with a split:
And even though Roy Hibbert really struggled in Game 1, Gortat has to prepare as if Hibbert will return to his all-star caliber form tonight, even if nobody on the outside thinks that's possible.
Casey Phillips sat down with John Wall for a 1-on-1 Courtside Report where they talked Game 2, the NFL Draft, and his cameo at the Mystics game:
Just like in Game 1, it's a 7pm tip tonight on TNT. You can listen to Dave and Glenn on 99.1 FM or 1500 AM and if you're in the DC area you can head to Verizon Center for a viewing party on the big screen.
We'll be live chatting on WashingtonWizards.com beginning at tip-off and taking you through the end of the game.
Game 2. Another road challenge for the Wizards, who are making winning on the road seem easy. It's not. But, the Wizards are now 4-0 this postseason on the road and John Wall, Bradley Beal, and head coach Randy Wittman have yet to experience what losing on the road in the playoffs feels like. They'll look to keep that streak going by taking a commanding 2-0 lead with another road win tonight vs. the Pacers.
The Wizards jumped out to another fast start in Game 1, something they have done in all six of their playoff games thus far. In fact, they have yet to trail after one quarter of play. That's been key because that usually takes the crowd out of the game from the start and lets them build confidence.
Even with momentum on their side, they won't get ahead of themselves and are still treating this Game 2 like they are the underdogs. Hear from the guys at Tuesday's practice:
We'll have more from shootaround this morning and then will be back at Bankers Life tonight for Game 2!
Here are some good notes from Game 1:
Drew Gooden is the first NBA player in the shot clock era (1954-55) to have 12 points and 13 rebounds in less than 18 minutes of play.
Trevor Ariza is the first NBA player to go 6-of-6 in a playoff game since Peja Stojakovic did it for the Mavericks on May 8, 2011.
Bradley Beal is the youngest player in NBA history to have three games of at 25 points in a single postseason.
Wizards head coach Randy Wittman is the first coach to win his first four career playoff games since Mike Dunleavy did it with the Los Angeles Lakers in 1991. Pat Riley is the only other coach in NBA history to accomplish this.