Pacers stumble again vs. Hawes, 76ers
by Jason Wolf, USA TODAY Sports
PHILADELPHIA – Spencer Hawes flirted with a quadruple double and Jrue Holiday used a first-half scoring binge to help the 76ers defeat the Indiana Pacers 98-91 Saturday night at the Wells Fargo Center. The Sixers won for just the third time in 40 games when trailing after three quarters.
Hawes finished with 18 points, a career-high 16 rebounds, a season-high eight assists and a career-high seven blocks. The last player to match or exceed those stats in a single game was Houston’s Hakeem Olajuwon in 1990. The last Sixer to post those numbers was Charles Barkley in 1986.
“He’s playing like the Beast in the East, like he did last year,” Holiday said. “He almost had a triple-double tonight, which obviously we need from him every night, but again he’s playing like the best big man in the league.”
Holiday had 27 points and 12 assists to pace six Sixers (25-40) in double-digit scoring, including all five starters. He had 20 points in the first half.
The Sixers have won two of their last three games, all against playoff-bound teams, including a victory against the Brooklyn Nets on Monday and a four-point loss to the defending champion Miami Heat on Wednesday. They had lost 12 of their previous 13.
“I really like the nucleus we have here and what we’ve built here,” Hawes said. “This year has been tough on everybody, but I think that if we can keep the right mindset going forward and finish out strong, I think the future is bright.”
Roy Hibbert recorded 25 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Pacers (40-26), owners of the second-best record in the Eastern Conference. Paul George had 18 points, 14 rebounds and eight assists.
The Pacers, who were playing their second game in as many nights, have lost four of their last six.
The Sixers opened the fourth quarter on a 19-4 run. A Lavoy Allen tip-in gave Philadelphia a 73-72 lead just seconds into the frame and Dorell Wright hit a 3 for a 76-72 advantage. After George briefly interrupted the surge by hitting a pair of free throws for the Pacers, Allen and … [For more on Pacers stumble again vs. Spencer Hawes, 76ers, click here.]