Injury-depleted Pacers routed by Nuggets 108-87
INDIANAPOLIS — Ty Lawson thinks the Denver Nuggets got back on track on Friday night at Indiana.
Lawson had 11 points and 10 assists, and the Nuggets snapped a six-game losing streak with a 108-87 victory over the Pacers for their first road win of the season.
"It’s huge. We went on this losing streak and everybody’s in here losing their minds," Lawson said. "But it’s early in the season and we have a chance to turn it around. I think this is the right step in doing that. We finally got everything clicking on all cylinders."
Denver had seven players score in double figures in just its second victory of the season. Arron Afflalo scored 10 of his 17 points in the first half, and Wilson Chandler finished with 13 points.
The Nuggets outscored the Pacers 34-19 in the second quarter and led by as many as 32 points. Denver shot 49 percent (43 of 87) from the floor.
Denver coach Brian Shaw returned to Indiana for just the second time since his two-year tenure as an assistant coach with the Pacers. His team has struggled to find consistency in the early part of the season.
"It just feels good to get a win and see what that feels like again," Shaw said. "Tonight I thought we played like we wanted to change the outcome. We had the effort, we had the energy, we had the intensity. It just feels good to get back into the `W’ column."
The Pacers, plagued by injuries, were without three of their starting five and several key reserves. David West (right ankle), George Hill (left Knee), Paul George (fractured tibia) and C.J. Watson (foot) have not played this season. Rodney Stuckey (sore foot) missed Friday’s game and CJ Miles departed in the first quarter with a sore right calf.
A.J. Price scored 14 for Indiana, which shot 40.5 percent (34 for 84) from the field. Donald Sloan, Solomon Hill and Lavoy Allen each had 12.
"You can’t sit and harp on a loss; you can’t celebrate a win too long. The next night we have another one. That’s the beauty of the NBA," Price said. "Tonight (Denver) made shots. You have those nights where the ball is just going in the hole for the other team."
Kenneth Faried and Danilo Gallinari scored 12 points apiece for Denver.
Denver rookie Gary Harris scored 13 points in his NBA debut. Harris, the 19th overall pick in the draft, was 6 for 10 from the field in 18 1/2 minutes.
Harris also played his high school ball in nearby Fishers.
"When your time comes you make the most of it. I definitely had nerves," he said. "I have nerves before every game, especially with this one being my first one. It just feels good to come home and do it here. It just felt good to see that first shot go down."
Nuggets: The Nuggets’ two victories have come against teams from the Central in the Eastern Conference, Detroit and Indiana.
Pacers: Price was considering playing in China before the Pacers signed him last week. He is averaging 11.4 points in five games with Indiana.
Nuggets: Travel to New York to take on the Knicks on Sunday.
Pacers: Visit Chicago to face the Bulls on Saturday night.