“This was a sensational defensive effort,” Indiana coach Frank Vogel said. “You want to see a team come out and play as hard as any on the defensive end, come see this team play.”
Trying for their first four-game win streak on the road since February 2008, the Wizards (16-18) stumbled at the foul line. They finished 9 of 23 on free throws, hitting just five of their first 14.
“I thought we did a great job moving the ball early in the game and sticking with it,” John Wall said. “But you can’t stay in the game when you are missing free throws like we were.”
Washington lost to the Pacers for the 11th time in 12 tries and haven’t won at Indiana since April 18, 2007.
Indiana remains the NBA’s best home team at 17-1 at Banker’s Life Fieldhouse, including seven in a row.
“We knew they would be tough to beat,” West said. “They came out strong and we countered.”
Wall’s struggles in Indiana continued. He shot four 4 of 15 from the field Friday and is 8 for 29 in his past two games here.
Washington was led by Bradley Beal with 17 points.
The Pacers overcame a 37-of-83 shooting night with a 6-of-13 performance from the 3-point range. Washington finished 26 of 81 from the field.
The Pacers outrebounded Washington 61-41. They were led by George, who had 14 rebounds, and Lance Stephenson, who had 10.
Watson entered with about nine minutes remaining in the second quarter to score five quick points. His 3-pointer pushed Indiana’s lead to 31-26 with 6:32 left in the quarter.