Pacers vs Cavaliers (Preseason)

Game Recap: Cavaliers 110, Pacers 94

The Cavaliers defeated the Pacers, 110-94. Cedi Osman recorded a team-high 14 points, along with three rebounds and two assists for the Cavaliers, while Kevin Love added 10 points in the victory. Doma

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Game Recap: Cavaliers 110, Pacers 94

The Cavaliers defeated the Pacers, 110-94. Cedi Osman recorded a team-high 14 points, along with three rebounds and two assists for the Cavaliers, while Kevin Love added 10 points in the victory. Doma
Oct 15, 2021  |  00:01

Pacers Postgame: October 15, 2021

October 5, 2021 - Indiana Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle and players Myles Turner, Goga Bitadze and Isaiah Jackson recap the 110-94 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.
Oct 15, 2021  |  11:35

Washington Coast to Coast

Oct 15, 2021  |  00:06

Sabonis to Jackson

Oct 15, 2021  |  00:06

Sabonis in Transition

Oct 15, 2021  |  00:07

Craig to the Rim Early

Oct 15, 2021  |  00:06

Game Rewind: Pacers 94, Cavaliers 110 (Preseason)

Friday, October 15, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET at Gainbridge Fieldhouse
by Wheat Hotchkiss Writer/Editor

Game Recap

The Pacers got their final practice run in before the real thing on Friday night, hosting the Cleveland Cavaliers at Gainbridge Fieldhouse for the fourth and final game of the preseason.

Indiana's starters played two quarters, then sat out the second half in a 110-94 loss to the Cavs.

Third-year center Goga Bitadze led the Blue & Gold with a team-high 18 points on 6-of-10 shooting (4-of-7 from 3-point range), six rebounds, and three blocks in the win.

"I really liked the way Goga played. He was aggressive, he was forceful, he was a factor at both ends," Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle said after the game. "He stepped into his shots with decisiveness and aggression and he protected the rim and rebounded."

Rookie Isaiah Jackson also impressed at times, finishing with 12 points on 5-of-7 shooting (2-of-4 from 3-point range), three rebounds, two steals, and a block.

Two-time All-Star Domantas Sabonis tallied 10 points on 5-of-8 shooting, six rebounds, and three assists in 18 first-half minutes. Fellow big man Myles Turner added 10 points and three boards in 15 minutes.

Indiana was already without six key pieces heading into Friday's final exhibition. Veteran guard Jeremy Lamb (sore right wrist) was ruled out in the hours before the game, joining Malcolm Brogdon (left shoulder sprain), Justin Holiday (sprained left ankle), Caris LeVert (sore lower back), Kelan Martin (strained left hamstring), and T.J. Warren (left toe fracture) on the sidelines.

Lamb and Brogdon appear on track to be back for next week's season opener, but the status of the others is less certain (save for Warren, who remains out indefinitely).

The Pacers jumped out to an early 6-2 lead thanks to a pair of Torrey Craig layups and led 13-10 following Turner's 3-pointer with 7:16 remaining. But the Cavaliers surged ahead from there, hitting three threes during an 11-0 run over the next three minutes.

The visitors maintained the advantage for the rest of the opening frame. Despite seven points from Turner and six from Sabonis, Indiana trailed the Cavs after one, 35-26.

The Pacers made a small surge early in the second quarter thanks to their two first-round picks. Chris Duarte drained a step-back three and then Jackson threw down off an alley-oop from Sabonis to trim the margin to seven with just under nine minutes remaining in the first half. But the Cavs held Indiana without a point for just under three minutes and pushed the lead back to 13.

The Blue & Gold had another mini-run later in the frame, as Duarte drilled another three and then T.J. McConnell dished to Craig for a dunk that trimmed the margin to 51-43 with 3:15 remaining. But again, the Cavs answered, this time with a Mitch Ballock trey and Lamar Stevens layup to push the lead back to 13, a margin they maintained entering the intermission with a 60-47 lead.

Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle opted to sit his starters in the second half, shutting them down with the regular-season opener looming in five days.

Bitadze provided an early spark for Indiana's reserves, hitting back-to-back 3-pointers in the opening minutes of the second half.

"It felt great obviously to finally make some shots," Bitadze said. "Just got to stay consistent with workouts and just believing in your shot, which is hard when you're not playing and you see shots miss. You've just got to keep working and stay ready."

But the Pacers went the next 4:48 without a point, as Cleveland reeled off 10 unanswered points to push its lead to 22. Cedi Osman hit two 3-pointers in that sequence and three in the first five minutes of the half to help the Cavs break the game open.

Cleveland led 83-67 after three quarters and the Pacers never seriously threatened in the fourth quarter as both teams went deep into their benches down the stretch.

Osman had a team-high 14 points for Cleveland, going 4-for-7 from 3-point range. Dean Wade added 12 points and seven rebounds, while Ballock also scored 12.

The Pacers will open the 2021-22 season on Wednesday night in Charlotte and then visit Washington on Friday to close out their first road trip of the year. The Pacers will host the Miami Heat at the Fieldhouse on Saturday, Oct. 23 for Opening Night presented by Gainbridge.

Inside the Numbers

The Pacers shot just 41 percent from the field, while Cleveland converted 52.5 percent of its shots.

Jackson reached double figures for the first time this preseason.

Indiana forced the Cavs into 19 turnovers, but the Pacers had 17 giveaways themselves.

All 14 active players saw the floor for the Pacers on Friday, with all but Terry Taylor (5:12) logging 12 or more minutes.

Two-way guard Duane Washington had eight points and five assists in 19:21, while fellow two-way guard DeJon Jarreau tallied seven points, three rebounds, and three assists in 12 minutes of action.

You Can Quote Me On That

"Confidence booster for him. I think that you can practice it all you want, but to actually execute in a game, it does nothing but bode well for your confidence, especially the last game of the preseason. It will hopefully build some positive momentum for him." -Turner on Bitadze's big night

"Definitely it's hard, I'm not going to lie, when you don't know when you're going to get in the game. But you've got to stay professional. It's the NBA. Whenever you get a chance, you've got to stay ready." -Bitadze on having limited playing time in the preseason prior to Friday

"We've got four guys that are very good players. Really, all of them are young. The oldest guy is 25, Domas and Myles are 25 years old. I was a rookie in the NBA when I was 25. Isaiah is 19, Goga's 22...these guys are exciting young players. We have a great luxury there. We have a lot of depth and we know they're all ready." -Carlisle on the Pacers' big men

"I love it. This is as involved as I've ever been. I'm happy with it so far. I know we still have a ways to go, but from the preliminary stuff, I like what he's put in...From a personal standpoint, I feel like I have more opportunities to be aggressive. I'm more involved and I'm encouraged to go out there and shoot the ball." -Turner on Carlisle's offense

Stat of the Night

All of Bitadze's 18 points came in the second half. His four 3-pointers over the final two quarters were one more than his career high for a game (he made three threes at Utah on April 16 of last season).


  • The Pacers went 2-2 in the preseason, picking up wins at Cleveland on Oct. 8 and on Wednesday against Memphis and dropping their opener in New York on Oct. 5.
  • Duarte failed to score in double figures for the first time this preseason, tallying eight points on 3-of-9 shooting in 16:36 in the first half.
  • Cleveland was without starting guard Collin Sexton (right shoulder sprain) and Indianapolis native Dylan Windler (sore right hip).

Up Next

The Pacers open the regular season in Charlotte against Gordon Hayward and the Hornets on Wednesday, Oct. 20 at 7:00 PM ET.


The Pacers host Jimmy Butler and the Miami Heat for Opening Night presented by Gainbridge on Saturday, Oct. 23 at 7:00 PM ET. Secure your seats today and help fill Gainbridge Fieldhouse to cheer on your Pacers. Find Tickets »


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