New Orleans Pelicans point guard Jrue Holiday shined in the absences of Brandon Ingram and Zion Williamson. His 31 points led New Orleans to a 124-117 win against the Indiana Pacers on the road.
How It Happened:
The Pelicans ruled Ingram and Williamson out of Saturday’s game against the Pacers due to ankle injuries.
They started the first quarter strong by outscoring Indiana 31-26 in the first 12 minutes.
Indiana’s T.J. Warren gave the Pacers a 24-23 lead with 1:18 left in the first, but New Orleans closed the quarter on a 8-2 run in the final minute.
The Pelicans were able to maintain their control of the game in the second. Both teams scored 29 points in the quarter. New Orleans led by as much as 11 in the second, but Indiana brought it down to a five-point game going into halftime.
New Orleans led 60-55 after the first two quarters.
Both team came out cold in the third quarter. Indiana scored the first points of the second half with 10:05 left. The Pacers took a 67-64 lead after a Domantas Sabonis 3-pointer.
The teams traded field goals for most of the third quarter and the Pelicans took an 88-85 lead into the final quarter.
Holiday scored 17 points in the fourth quarter as the Pelicans outscored Indiana 36-32 in the final 12 minutes.
Sabonis made it a one-point game with 2:05 left in the game until Holiday and Lonzo Ball made back-to-back field goals to give the Pelicans an 115-110 lead.
Holiday iced the game with a 27-foot 3-point shot with 45.5 seconds remaining. He made the final six free throws of the game to seal the road win.
New Orleans is now 22-31 on the year. They finished the two-game road trip 2-0 with wins over the Chicago Bulls and Indiana Pacers. They are now 4.5 games back from the Memphis Grizzlies for the final spot in the NBA playoffs.
Big Number: 84
The Pelicans shot 84 percent from the free throw line, making 21 of their 24 free throw attempts. Free throw shooting had been an issue for New Orleans, but they managed to make a good percentage from the line against the Pacers.
Player of the Game: Jrue Holiday
Holiday stepped up when the Pelicans did not have Ingram or Williamson against a 31-win Pacers team. He scored 31 points, with 17 of them coming in the fourth quarter. He sealed the game with a late 3-point shot and he made all six free throws to close out the game. He also dished out 10 assists to go along with six rebounds.
Up Next: At home vs. the Portland Trailblazers, Tuesday Feb. 11; Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.