NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Local News

December 23, 2013

Pacers run away from Celtics with 106-79 rout

INDIANAPOLIS — Paul George scored 24 points and Lance Stephenson recorded his third triple-double of the season, leading the Indiana Pacers to a 106-79 victory over the Boston Celtics yesterday.

Stephenson had 12 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists as Indiana (22-5) won its second straight and maintained its grip on the Eastern Conference’s best record. He’s the only player in the league with more than one triple-double this season.

Avery Bradley scored 13 points for Boston. Courtney Lee and Jeff Green each had 11 in coach Brad Stevens’ return to his hometown. Stevens grew up in Zionsville, an Indy suburb, and led nearby Butler to back-to-back national championship games as the Bulldogs’ coach.

But there was no magic for the Celtics, who lost their third in a row.

Indiana took control of the game by closing the first quarter on a 10-2 run and pulled away with a 15-1 spurt midway through the second quarter.

Boston never got closer than 13 the rest of the way.

Stevens, a lifelong Pacers fan, received a warm welcome before his first game at Bankers Life Fieldhouse since taking the Celtics job in July.

The rest of the night was pretty tough against a foe the 37-year-old coach dubbed “the best Pacers team” he’d seen in his lifetime.

Indiana certainly lived up to the billing, winning its second straight since losing back-to-back games for the first time all season. It shot 49 percent from the field, outrebounded Boston 53-41 and only committed 13 turnovers.

Since losing Wednesday at two-time defending champion Miami, the team Indiana is battling for home-court advantage, the Pacers have beaten Western Conference contender Houston and Boston, which entered Sunday tied for the lead in the Atlantic Division, by a combined 60 points.

Now the Pacers have a chance to pad their lead over the Heat by playing 10 of their next 11 games against opponents with losing records.

Boston, like Houston, never had much of a chance at Indiana.

After the Celtics used a 7-0 run to take a 15-10 lead, the Pacers answered with the 10-2 run to make it 20-17 after one. They extended the lead to 47-28 on George Hill’s 3-pointer with 2:48 left in the first half and continued pulling away throughout the second half.

Roy Hibbert had 15 points and 12 rebounds for the Pacers.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints

Port Pics
AP Video
Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US Raw: Air Algerie Flight 5017 Wreckage
Special Features