What a way to head into the Xmas break!
The Indiana Pacers looked in control most of the night against the New Orleans Hornets, who had been struggling on the road but had also beaten the Pacers the last four times.
With the Pacers up 89-88 with 30 seconds left in the game, the Hornets miss a jumper, but David West outmuscles Danny Granger for the rebound and converts under the hoop while James Posye fouls him. West converts the and-one, and the Pacers are down 91-89.
On the next possession, Rush drives into the lane and passes out to Granger behind the three-point line. As the defenders converge on Granger, he flips the pass out to Posey by the corner, who converts a three-pointer. Pacers lead, 92-91. Roughly 16 seconds left on the clock.
After a time out, Chris Paul dribbles around West, and when Foster goes to help out, he passes it back to West, who calmly drills a 19-foot jumper. Hornets up 93-92, 3 seconds to go.
Pacers call a timeout, and from the inbounds play, Granger gets the ball just inside the three-point line and squares up for a jumper that looked good all the way. It went in, hit the sides of the rim a few times, then somehow popped back out. Just as the ball falls off the rim, Mike Dunleavy Jr comes out of nowhere and gets a left-handed fingertip on the ball, a couple of milliseconds before time expires.
The ball hangs on the rim for what seems like an eternity as the buzzer sounds, then finally drops through. Pacers win it, 94-93.
Granger top scored with 27, but did most of his damage early, finishing 8-22 from the field. Hibbert had a forgettable one with 2 points on 1-10 shooting. Things can only get better for him from here. Posey was a big hero, hitting 5-7 from three-point range to finish with 15.
And of course, in the most anticipated match up, Darren Collison outplayed his mentor Chris Paul. Collison had 18 points, 5 rebounds, 5 assists, 2 steals and 4 turnovers on 8-11 shooting, while Paul struggled with 14 points, 4 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal and 6 turnovers on 4-11 shooting. Way to go Darren!