Feb 13, 2014 12:38 AM by Greg Smith
THE FACT: Indiana had season highs in points (119) and victory margin (39). The margin is also the widest in the history of the Pacers-Nuggets series.
THE LEAD: David West scored 25 points and the Indiana Pacers bounced back from Sunday's upset by the Orlando Magic with 119-80 romp past the short-handed Denver Nuggets on Monday before 16,124 fans at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
West scored 17 points in the first quarter to set the tone and finished 11-for-13, making his final nine shots, as Indiana improved to 40-11 overall, 25-2 at home. Playing without a true point guard in the absence of Ty Lawson due to a fractured rib, the Nuggets shot .315 overall and were 6-for-26 from the 3-point line in falling to 24-26.
QUOTABLE: "We learned a couple of lessons in a couple of games this season. Sacramento had a couple of key guys out and the rest of their players elevated their play and gave us a really tough game. And last night we learned we've got to play all 48 minutes."
-- Pacers coach Frank Vogel
THE STAT: All 13 active Indiana players scored for the first time this season.
TURNING POINT: In truth, it was the second quarter of the Nuggets' loss in Detroit on Saturday, when Lawson sustained the rib injury that will keep him out until after the All-Star break. With both Lawson and backup Nate Robinson (knee) out, the Nuggets' offense was out of synch from the jump. The Pacers bolted to a 31-20 lead after one, pushed it to 61-40 at halftime and then made it a laugher with a 16-5 burst in the third that pushed the lead to 30.
QUOTABLE II: "We made a lot of mistakes last night, didn't play the game the right way, and it cost us the game. We're in a fight for the top spot in the conference and we can't afford to give games away like we did last night. I thought we came out with a different resolve. We wanted to make sure we got control of this game and put it away. The games are going to get tougher after the break. We know that. We talked about finishing up strong before the break, but also we know we want to be running downhill the last few games of the season. We have to start preparing for that right now."
-- David West
HOT: Indiana's bench had one of its best nights of the season, producing 46 points on 17-for-31 (.548) shooting, led by Luis Scola with 11 and Danny Granger with nine. ... Timofey Mozgov was the only Denver player to hit half his shots, going 4-for-8.
NOT: The Nuggets' starters shot a combined 16-for-56 (.286) with 10 turnovers.
QUOTABLE III: "The one thing I'm disappointed in tonight, I can take losing, but I don't want our guys to display being a loser. There's a difference between losing and being a loser. Basically, when things go bad, I don't want everyone to just splinter off and jump off the ship."
-- Nuggets coach Brian Shaw
NOTABLE: Roy Hibbert had his 13th double-double (14 points, 12 rebounds) as well as four blocked shots. ... Indiana snapped a five-game losing streak against the Nuggets. ... Indiana shot a season-high .575 overall despite going 4-for-16 from the arc. ... All five Pacers starters scored in double figures for the 12th time. ... Paul George and Lance Stephenson scored 12 apiece and George Hill 10. ... Wilson Chandler scored 17 but shot 6-for-19 to lead Denver. J.J. Hickson scored 12 and Jordan Hamilton 11 off the bench. ... Randy Foye started at point guard and had nine points and 10 assists but shot 2-for-13. ... The Nuggets also were without Danilo Gallinari (left knee), and JaVale McGee (stress fracture, left leg). ... With Foye at the point and 6-10 Quincy Miller at shooting guard, Shaw used his 13th lineup of the season.
UP NEXT: For the Pacers, Wednesday vs. Dallas, Feb. 18 vs. Atlanta, Feb. 19 at Minnesota. For the Nuggets, Wednesday at Minnesota, Feb. 18 vs. Phoenix, Feb. 20 at Milwaukee.