The Toronto Raptors were able to establish themselves defensively and offensively from opening tip of Game Three vs. the Indiana Pacers. The Raptors frustrated Pacers’ NBA All-Star Paul George, not allowing him to get to his favourite spots on the floor, with DeMarre Carroll applying his ‘Junkyard Dog 2.0′ style of defense. Paul George finished the game with 25 points (including 12-12 from the free throw line), but he went just 6-19 from the field, in large part because the Raptors refused to let him get into a rhythm offensively.
The Raptors outscored the Pacers 24-17 in the first quarter and took things up a level in the second quarter, outscoring the Pacers again 29-19. Toronto was executing their game plan on both ends of the floor, and took a 17 point lead, 53-36, into halftime. The Pacers were able to impose their style of play in the third quarter and held the Raptors to just 18 points while scoring 23 points of their own, cutting the Raptors’ lead to 12 points, 71-59, heading into the 4th quarter. Toronto managed to score their first 30 point quarter of the series, continuing their offensive effectiveness, leading them to the 101-85 win to secure Game Three and re-take homecourt advantage for the series.
It was a bounce back game for DeMar DeRozan who made his first three shots of the game, including converting an ‘And 1′ three-point play on the first shot. DeRozan looked confident and aggressive, and was able to attempt nine free throws in the game, making seven of them leading to 21 total points on the night. DeRozan’s fellow NBA All-Star backcourt mate, Kyle Lowry, seemed to regain his shooting touch as well, also scoring 21 points, including four made three-point field goals. Lowry also dolled out a game-high eight assists. DeMarre Carroll played his most minutes and scored his highest point total since returning to game action in a limited basis on April 7th; seeing 35 minutes on the floor and scoring 17 points (including three made three-point field goals) in the process.
The Pacers’ centre, Myles Turner, who was in foul trouble in Game Two, was active early and made his mark. Turner finished with 17 points, eight rebounds, and three blocks, patrolling the paint on defense and making an impact on the offensive end as well.
The Pacers attempted 33 free throws, compared to just 16 by the Raptors, but despite the differential in the Pacers favour it seemed that Indiana were the ones who were playing in an undisciplined nature; picking up three technical fouls throughout the game.
The Raptors scored 26 points off 17 Pacers turnovers, conversely the Pacers managed to score only ten points on 11 Raptors turnovers. Toronto continued to improve on taking care of the ball through the first three games of this series: 20 turnovers in Game One, 13 turnovers in Game Two, and 11 turnovers in Game Three.
Game Four will be played on Saturday April 23rd in Indianapolis at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, for a 3pm ET tip off.
Notable Raptors stat lines:
DeMarre Carroll – 17 points, five rebounds, one steal, one block
Jonas Valanciunas – Nine points, 14 rebounds, one block
DeMar DeRozan – 21 points, two rebounds, three assists, two steals
Kyle Lowry – 21 points, four rebounds, eight assists, one steal
Cory Joseph – Ten points, two rebounds, four assists, one steal
Notable Pacers stat lines:
Paul George – 25 points, six assists, ten rebounds, one steal, one block
George Hill – 13 rebounds, three rebounds, two assists, one steal
Myles Turner – 17 points, eight rebounds, three blocks
Postgame Media Sessions:
Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan
“Frank Vogel and Paul George talk about the Raptors Game 3 loss to the Raptors”
Post-game Locker room Player reactions: