Pacers Summer League Notebook – Point guard battle, unreviewable challenge, Simon visits, goodbyes to GRIII

Pacers, NBA Summer League

The Pacers’ bench was up and supportive of the guys on the floor.

LAS VEGAS, Nev. — The Pacers’ third and final pool game of the 2018 Summer League in Las Vegas was highlighted by a matchup of two top first-round point guards: Indiana’s Aaron Holiday (23rd) vs Cleveland’s Collin Sexton (8th).

This was the first real challenge for Holiday since he became a Pacer officially on July 1. It was obvious that they were going to go at one another.

Sexton did more damage on the offensive end, outscoring Holiday 21 to 12. He also dished out four assists and had four turnovers. Holiday, meanwhile, provided more all-around contributions – with eight assists, five rebounds, and three steals — but he was also responsible for eight of the Pacers’ 17 turnovers.

“Collin is a heck of a player,” Steve Gansey, coach of the Summer Pacers, said after the Cavaliers held on for a 93-88 win.

“He came down and hit a three. Aaron wanted come right back down and go at him, too. Those are two top young point guards that are in this league. It was fun to watch, but I think those guys got a little gassed towards the end after going at each other.”

The team’s were dead even over the final two quarters. 22-22 in the third and 24-24 in the fourth. The difference ultimately was the second frame, when the Cavs outscored the Pacers by eight points, and held them to 33.3-percent shooting.

This was one of the fun games within a game that is not only fun to observe, but it can also push the players. The Pacers just wrapped up their sixth day in Las Vegas — and anyone who has visited knows that’s three days too many.

After a poor showing in the opening game, T.J. Leaf led the Pacers in scoring for the second consecutive game with 20 points on 8-of-21 shooting, and grabbed nine boards. With 21 field goal attempts, it’s clear that he has the green light — and he should in summer league. He’s working to be a rotational player during his sophomore campaign. He’s spent the majority of his first offseason in Indy at the team facility, gained about 20 pounds in muscle, and continuing to gain confidence at this level.

“We wanted him to get stronger and pick it up on the defensive end,” Pacers coach Nate McMillan said on Saturday.

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