Luis Scola had reason to wear the look of the happiest man in the Indiana Pacers' locker room on Friday night.

His team had beaten the physical Chicago Bulls at their own game, 91-79, proving again to be the most dominant defense in the league and capturing a rare victory against a good opponent. And personally, Scola contributed with his best scoring game as a Pacer, leading the team with 19 points in 21 minutes on the floor. Then after the game, three of his energetic Mini-Mes scampered about the locker room, stealing all the attention with their cuteness. Four-year-old Matías Scola even conducted a television interview while another, Tiago, the one with the Boomer jersey, tried video bombing his dad.

So after the game, Scola should've looked relieved, and expressed as much.

"It feels good," Scola said. "We needed it."

Yes, the Pacers needed to show off their defense. It stopped the rush as the Bulls only shot 36.4 percent.

Though unexpected, the team also needed a lift from its experimental bench rotation. With Chris Copeland and Donald Sloan on the court together alongside regulars Evan Turner, Ian Mahinmi and Scola, the unit carried the Pacers through the second quarter.

Another necessary component: a willingness to keep the ball moving for 27 assists on 34 field goals.

So overall, it was an essential performance for the Pacers (51-18) who earned their first win against an opponent with a record over the .500 mark since Feb. 7 – an overtime victory over the Portland Trail Blazers.

"We got back to playing some sound defense and playing offensively the right way," Paul George said. "This is a great quality win against a great ball club."

George set a season-high mark in assists and earned his second career regular season triple-double (10 points, 12 rebounds and 10 assists). And George was just as good in handing out compliments after the game, calling Scola "one of the best midrange shooters not only on this team but in this league."