Game 2 Recap: Chicago Bulls vs Indiana Pacers

Posted by By at 20 April, at 02 : 34 AM Print

The result of game 2 was the same (a Bulls win) and the way it happened was almost the same (late comeback). By this point the Bulls know full well that this will be a series and they better be ready when the series shifts to Indiana for games 3-5. One thing we did see more of this game from Chicago was their top flight defense, which held the Pacers to under 20 points in a quarter for the first time this series. They also forced Indiana into 41% shooting from the floor and 35% from beyond the arc, both substantial improvements from game 1.

Two of the more important Pacers players in game 1 were non-factors last night for different reasons. Lightning quick Darren Collison left the game in the second quarter with a sprained ankle and didn’t return and may not be available for Thursday night’s game. The jumpers that were falling for Hansbrough in the first game weren’t yesterday. His 2-12 from the floor was a far cry from his 10-19 in game 1. Danny Granger’s 19 led the team and was the only Pacer in double digits other than A.J. Price, who had 13.

Derrick Rose had 36 points, with another heavy dose of them coming from the free-throw line. He was 12-13 from the line after going 19-21 in the first game. Boozer bounced back very well from a disappointing opening game to  chip in with 17 points and 16 rebounds in support of Rose. Luol Deng had 14 points with half of them coming from the free-throw line as his outside shot wasn’t falling, much like Tyler Hansbrough. Chicago will need him to shoot better 3-13 in future games. For the second straight game, the bench was not as productive as advertised prior to the series and was played fairly even by Indiana’s bench.

As the series shifts to Conseco Fieldhouse for game 3 the Pacers should  get quite an emotional lift from the crowd that should be fired up to do their part to make sure the series doesn’t go 3-0 and increase the chances the Bulls will celebrate a series win on their home floor. The Pacers are definitely a hard luck 0-2 right now as they will surely feel that they deserve a split, at the least, and possibly a 2-0 lead in the series. It’s hard to argue with them on either point as they’ve largely played better except for down the stretch in the 4th quarter in crunch time. Bulls fans will say that’s the time that matters most and that’s why they were 62-20.

The Bulls can probably expect their best shot from a desperate Pacers team on Thursday trying to keep their series hopes alive. Will they withstand a surefire early run? Will they come out with a run of their own and try to deliver a knockout blow. One thing we do know, Thursdays game is (pardon the incoming sports cliche) pivotal to the series hopes of both teams.

T.J. Ford closes out the first half with a 3/4 court heave as the buzzer sounds.

Danny Granger speaks after the game.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A5Imajoxzkk

Derrick Rose’s reaction to his team’s game 2 victory.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W-0il14AKLw

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