INDIANAPOLIS – It could have been advertised as a “Sweet 16” party, but it was far from a guarantee.
One of the three teams to beat the Pacers in Indianapolis this season was the one visiting Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Friday night with the team in the midst of a 15-game home winning streak.
Indiana’s third home game of the season was against the Raptors-Friday’s opponent-and it was one of the ugliest games of the season with the Pacers losing 74-72 to fall to 3-5 on the season.
Once again, the visitors to the north would make the Pacers have a game in Indianapolis to forget on Friday night.
The Pacers lost a four-point lead in the final ten seconds of regulation and then watched the Rudy Gay hit a game-winning shot with 1.7 left to go in overtime to send Indiana to a 100-98 loss at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Its snaps the Pacers’ 15-game home winning streak and is their first loss at home since December 7th, when the lost to the Nuggets 92-89.
David West led all scorers with 30 points while Paul George added 26 and it appeared the Pacers were headed to overtime when the former added a pair of free throws to extend the lead to four with ten seconds left.
But then came a nightmare sequence for the Pacers. Amir Johnson put in a shot with six seconds to cut the lead to two and then West threw the ball away to Rudy Gay a few seconds later. Johnson got back inside and put back his own miss with .1 on the clock to send the game to overtime.
Each team traded the lead in the extra session and left things knotted up at 98 with under ten seconds left. That’s when Gay-who finished with a Raptors-high 23 points-made his big play, hitting a shot from the baseline with 1.7 seconds left to give the Raptors a two-point lead.
George had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds but his shot from the top of the key spun out as the Pacers lost their first home game of 2013.