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Indiana Pacers at Boston Celtics

Team Totals: Pacers 108.3, Celtics 116.8

Injury Report: Kristaps Porzingis (O, calf), Xavier Tillman (Q, personal)

Pacers projected starters: Tyrese Haliburton, Andrew Nembhard, Aaron Nesmith, Pascal Siakam, Myles Turner

Celtics projected starters: Jrue Holiday, Derrick White, Jaylen Brown, Jayson Tatum, Al Horford

Offensive Ranks Pacers 2nd, Celtics 1st
Defensive Ranks: Pacers 24th, Celtics 3rd

Carlisle quotes: Said the loss was on him and he should have called a timeout before the inbound TO to Siakam, said they did a lot of good things and they’ve been a tough-minded team since the All-Star break, said they were planning to foul and Siakam just didn’t have the chance to without risking a shooting foul, said he can’t comment on the FTA discrepancy because he doesn’t want his daughters to sit out of a whole year of college (from the fines he’d get), said a lot of their turnovers are hard to explain but it is the Eastern Conference Finals, said he liked how they responded from the 12-0 hole.

Mazzulla quotes: Said Jrue brought it all from playmaking to scoring to defense, said he expects every game to be close, said they have to figure out when to push up the pace, said he liked the balance and they mostly took care of the ball besides some illegal screens, said Tatum just missed some good looks and he’ll just stay with it.

Stats and Notes:

Rim points per game: Pacers 1st, Celtics 19th

Rim points allowed per game: Pacers 29th, Celtics 3rd

Catch and shoot points per game: Pacers 11th, Celtics 1st

Catch and shoot points allowed per game: Pacers 1st, Celtics 10th

PNR handler scoring per game:Pacers 4th, Celtics 21st

PNR handler scoring allowed per game: Pacers 30th, Celtics 25th

Transition scoring per game: Pacers 2nd, Celtics 9th

Transition scoring allowed per game: Pacers 15th, Celtics 4th

*Well, we learned a copious amount of information in Game 1, and almost all of it related to how Boston’s defense lost all of its momentum going into this series. Even in the context of it, the biggest thing I learned was that keeping the Pacers out of transition is a little harder than expected. Despite Boston ranking fourth in transition points allowed during the season and ranking first in the postseason at a tiny 14.6 points per game, the Pacers smoked them in transition with 28 points. The Celtics were also excellent at limiting rim scoring before Monday, but they didn’t do that either with the Pacers getting 51 points at the rim. Thirdly, the Pacers had 55 potential assists after the Celtics were giving up just 38.1 per game in the previous postseason games. Even giving up all those rim points, it wasn’t like it was a big trade-off with 30 C&S possessions for the Pacers (Boston averaged 25.9 per game in previous playoff games). Sure, the five minutes of overtime inflated these stats a bit, but there’s some major “back to the drawing board” energy for the Boston defense. The Celtics would have definitely lost if not for the 32 points off 21 Indiana turnovers.

*For the Boston offense, we kind of didn’t learn too much. They were great, which was expected. They got their rim pressure at 49 points, they had their transition scoring at 26, and they were able to get to the line with 30 attempts. One little bonus was that the Celtics were able to generate some good looks from deep with 15 unguarded C&S attempts, and they really made the most of them with their pristine 1.60 PPP on those. Huge. The Celtics also had some really good ball movement with 51 potential assists (averaged 38.5 in previous playoff games). They didn’t drive enough, but they made them count with 32 points on their 46 drives. They needed every little bit of this offense, and their C&S efficiency swung the game along with the points off turnovers.

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