How do you know a basketball game doesn't matter that much? The Atlanta Hawks emptied their bench and even let Pape Sy into the contest.
Danny Granger posted a game-high 28 points and Darren Collison added 16 off the bench as the Indiana Pacers snapped a nine-game losing streak against the Atlanta Hawks with a 114-102 win at Conseco Fieldhouse on Friday night.
Roy Hibbert netted 14 points and netted 11 boards for the Pacers, who held a 49-36 edge on the glass.
Let's just say that it looked like the Hawks were just going through the motions, trying not to get hurt and finishing the string as they head to a first-round matchup against the Orlando Magic.
Josh Smith and Jason Collins stayed in Atlanta nursing injuries. All five Atlanta starters played less than 31 minutes. And there was a heavy dose of those guys on the bench that coach Larry Drew almost never uses in any basketball game.
Hilton Armstrong notched two points in 12 minutes and channeled his inner Rashan Michel -- almost coming to blows with Granger while picking up a technical. Etan Thomas had five points in almost nine minutes on the floor and Sy made his NBA debut late in the ballgame.
Atlanta's 2010 first round pick committed a foul, stole the basketball and had a shot swatted away in 3:08 on the floor.
The Hawks were never really in this one, as Indiana scored 10 of the first 12 points. Yes, Atlanta managed to tie the game at 20-20 with about 3:00 left in the first, but it was pretty much over from there as the Pacers pulled away for the easy win.
Jeff Teague had 21 points and Joe Johnson added 17 for Atlanta, which had just 11 assists on 36 field goals.