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Clippers Can't Keep Pace Again

March 29, 1994|From Associated Press

INDIANAPOLIS — To gauge the Clippers' success after five games of this six-game Eastern trip, one need look only at Ron Harper's numbers in the box score.

Harper, who was averaging 20.9 points, finished with four points on one-of-11 shooting in a 126-93 loss to the Indiana Pacers on Monday night. The Clippers have lost four games during the trip.

Dominique Wilkins, who had scored 30 or more points in six of his previous nine games, was able to lead the Clippers with only 20 points.

The Pacers' Reggie Miller, on the other hand, made all five of his three-point attempts in the first half as Indiana took a 66-45 lead.

Miller ended a four-game shooting slump during which he made only 15-of-40 field-goal attempts (37.5%). He finished with 22 points, including making five of six three-pointers and seven of 11 overall.

"I tried to keep myself more spread out on the floor," Miller said. "When I do, it opens it up for the guys inside, and my defender had to come out with me. Harper tried to double down, and when he did, it gave me free looks from three-(point range)."

Wilkins said the pace was set early.

"When you go up against a good team like Indiana, you've got to come out ready to play, and we didn't tonight," he said.

Rik Smits led seven Pacers scoring in double figures with 27 points, one shy of his season high.

"I thought we did a good job of coming out aggressive early," he said. "The last few games we were losing, we dug a hole for ourselves early. Tonight we came out aggressive and stayed with it."

The 7-foot-4 center, who started slowly, made 12 of 17 shots.

"The coaches said with Elmore (Spencer, the Clippers' center), you have to move him a little because he's a little bit slow reacting," Smits said.

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