Jarrett Jack shines in the second half
Every time the Pacers tried to fight their way back, the Warriors had an answer. They trailed by as many as 16 and fell 103-92 in Oakland Saturday night.
The difference? The final minute of the third quarter.
The Pacers had a little life after Sam Young and Gerald Green hit back-to-back 3-pointers and then West buried a jumper. Trouble is, Jarrett Jack, yes, the former Pacer, scored the final nine for the Warriors, including a buzzer-beater from half-court to close the third.
77-72 to 82-72 … just like that.
“I thought the difference tonight was that when we cut the game to five, their guys made some tough shots,” said David West, who had a team-high 23 points and eight rebounds. “Jack came in and played big for them.”
Warriors head coach Mark Jackson recognized the importance of Jack’s play and appreciated his willingness to throw up a shot at the buzzer.
“I’m going to tell you the truth, the thing I appreciated the most about it after playing for 17 years, after being an analyst and now as a coach, I’ve seen guys not take that shot because they did not want to mess up their field goal percentage,” Jackson said. “I’ve always thought how selfish of a play that is. For him to take that shot, it shows what he’s about – it’s about the team.”
“You look at the reaction from the bench, you look at Jack’s reaction with the pose and the camera shot – I think anytime you don’t finish out the play defensively it can take the wind from you. That certainly took place at the end of that quarter.”
When a player faces a team they once played for, I’ve got to believe there’s an added meaning for most players. Remember A.J. Price’s first performance against the Pacers earlier this season: 12 points, a career-high 14 assists and zero turnovers.
Jack shined Saturday against the Pacers. He came off the bench to contribute a season-high 18 points, five rebounds and five assists. Jack was perfect from the field (6-for-6) and scored 14 points in the second half, including 11 in a row spanning from the end of the third to the start of the fourth quarter.
The Pacers made a run late in the third but Jack stole the show and gave his team momentum for the final stanza. His take on the last-second shot: “It was just a heave. I just let it go and I actually thought it was going to go off the backboard. It was a crazy play, I think I’ve been due for one all year. I’ve had them rim in and out and I’ve launched a few of them.”
Jack played with the Pacers in 2008-09, started 52 games and 13.1 points, 3.4 rebounds and 4.1 assists. After the season, he was a restricted free agent and signed an offer-sheet with the Toronto Raptors. Ultimately, his price was too high — $20 million over four years — and the Pacers let him walk.
The Pacers have Sunday off and will practice Monday before heading to Chicago to finish a four-game road trip on Tuesday (8 PM EST).