Pacers eliminate Wizards with 3rd consecutive road win

Pacers eliminate Wizards with 3rd consecutive road win
May 15, 2014, 10:30 pm
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(Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports)

The Wizards put up an inspired effort in erasing a 16-point deficit in Game 6, but for the third time in a row they lost at Verizon Center, and had their season ended by the Indiana Pacers.

After briefly taking the lead 74-73 on a three-pointer by Bradley Beal with 8:30 left, the Wizards came unraveled down the stretch in a 93-80 loss to drop the series 4-2. 

The Pacers advance to play the Miami Heat in a rematch of last season's Eastern Conference finals that begin Sunday. 

David West had his best game of the series as he knocked down clutch shots in succession to overcome a sub-par outing from Paul George. West led all scorers with 29 points on 13-for-26 shooting, six rebounds and four assists. George had 12 points on 4-for-11. Lance Stephenson had his best game of the series with 17 points, eight assists and five rebounds. 

The Wizards were led by Marcin Gortat who had 19 points on 7-for-12 shooting, Beal with 16 points, Nene's 15 and John Wall with 12 points and nine assists. Trevor Ariza missed all three of his three-point attempts and finished with just six points on 1-for-5 overall shooting. 

Turning point: After the Wizards took their first lead since 8-7 in the first quarter on that three-pointer by Beal, the Pacers went on a 17-2 run to clinch the victory. 

Key stats: An elite three-point shooting team all season, the Wizards missed 16 of 18 from long range for 11.1%. ... The Pacers were outrebounded 62-23 in Game 5 but only 40-38 in Game 6. 

From the locker room: "They made plays down the stretch. That is what it boiled down to. ... We made our run, took the lead, it was 74-73 and we just could not maintain that momentum. Tough, but we have a bunch of guys in there that are really disappointed. I think we all felt we had an opportunity here to do more than we did and that is a good feeling for those guys. They are hurt in there, and when you are hurt that means you care. And I could not be more proud of the group of guys than I am of these guys. They gave me their heart and soul this year." -- Wizards coach Randy Wittman

"We just were shocked and amazed what a heck of a season we had to get this far. We were one game away from forcing a Game 7 against the No. 1 team in the East. It was a successful season." -- Wall 

"We knew going into halftime that we can still compete and win this game. We were only down 12. ... When I made that three, I really thought that we were going to just pull it out. We just worked so hard to come back that we spent so much energy trying to make that comeback and we ended up being dead at the end." -- Beal 

"We just couldn't stop them. We couldn't stop them. They came out hard and David West, he was shooting very well. He was really aggressive and they had a bigger will." -- Gortat

"I would like to congratulate the Wizards on a heck of a season and a heck of a series. The coach staff was doing a great job of building something pretty special here in D.C. with a really young backcourt and some bigs. Just a team approach and they just continued to challenge us. Hats off to what they're doing here. ... We try to control the pace. We have a very good defensive team and we hold teams to 80 points we have a good chance to win. That's what our reputation is built on, defensive rebounding. We had a horrible performance in rebounding in Game 5 but we bounced back and played tonight." -- Pacers coach Frank Vogel 

"We've been there before. We showed resolved. They're a really good team. They had a terrific season and we stayed together. We didn't split apart. We didn't want to go back to Indy, as much as we love Indy, for a Game 7." -- Pacers C Roy Hibbert

Next up: The Wizards will clean out their lockers Friday and break for the off-season. 

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