Welcome to the Daily NBA Fix for Sunday, April 20, the morning after three NBA teams tried to destroy the conventional wisdom about home-court advantage.
Winning on the road is difficult in the NBA. Sixteen of the NBA’s 30 teams finished below .500 on the road this season and road teams were just 516-714 in 2013-14, a .420 winning percentage.
So, of course, it makes sense that after the first day of the NBA Playoffs, road teams are 3-1, a .750 winning percentage.
None of those road wins was more surprising, or more thorough, than the beating the Atlanta Hawks put on the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. The eight-point final margin of Atlanta’s 101-93 belies the nature of the way Hawks controlled the second half.
It’s the second time in two weeks the Hawks have gone to Indy and knocked the Pacers around like a pinata at a kid’s birthday party.
And, yes, the panic meter in Indiana is at 11, with apologies to Spinal Tap. A glum David West called out his teammates for their inability to avoid fouling on the defensive end.
“We’re fighting uphill,” West said (per ESPN.com). “We can’t allow teams to go on that type of run. We have to make some adjustments on how we’re defending them. We have to guard, too, without fouling. Make them take shots. We didn’t do a good enough job.”
Lance Stephenson, though, said the Pacers would be “OK.” It was reminiscent of this classic scene:
The Daily NBA Fix will do what it did all season long, deliver highlights, game capsules, the top and bottom five players and, yes, we’ll still be handing out the Goose Egg, Clean and Sober and Ironman awards. We’ll also have informational tidbits and a look at the daily lines for those who want to drop a buck or two on a wager.
Check out the highlights below from the night that was, then get into the game capsules (home teams in CAPS).