The Indiana Pacers have been spiraling downward over the course of the past month, but for at least one game, they looked the part of a title contender again. The Pacers pulled out a huge 102-97 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Sunday, moving back into the driver's seat for the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference.
Indiana led for much of the game and had an 11-point lead early in the fourth quarter, but Oklahoma City came storming back and tied the game at 89-89 on a Russell Westbrook three with just under three minutes to play. Paul George then responded with a three-pointer to put the Pacers back ahead, and they held on for the win.
George finished with 20 points and 12 rebounds, and although he went just 6-of-17 from the field, he did go 3-of-6 from deep. Lance Stephenson recorded his league-best fifth triple-double on the season, putting up 17 points, 11 assists and 10 rebounds. David West scored a team-high 21 points on 9-of-11 shooting, while C.J. Watson had 20 points off the bench. The Pacers shot 52.8 percent overall and 9-of-20 from deep in one of their finest shooting performances in some time.
Kevin Durant had 38 points on 13-of-27 shooting, but he went just 2-of-11 from long range. Westbrook struggled with his shot all night, going just 7-of-23 from the field.
Portland Trail Blazers 119, Golden State Warriors 117 (OT)
LaMarcus Aldridge had 26 points and nailed the go-ahead jumper with 39 seconds left to lift the Blazers past the Warriors in a wild overtime affair. The win kept Portland's hopes to get the No. 4 seed in the Western Conference alive.
Golden State lost despite 47 points from Stephen Curry and 25 from Klay Thompson. The Splash Brothers knocked down 13 of the Warriors' 17 threes on the night.
Portland appeared on the verge of winning the game in regulation, but Draymond Green tied the game with 3.6 seconds left in the fourth quarter with a step-back three:
The overtime went back and forth before Aldridge put the Blazers ahead for good.
Andre Iguodala was the only other Warrior besides Curry and Thompson to reach double figures in scoring with 15 points. However, Iguodala missed a potential game-winning three in the final seconds of overtime.
New York Knicks 100, Chicago Bulls 89
Tim Hardaway Jr. had 20 points off the bench to lead the recently eliminated Knicks to a win over the Bulls, who had been riding a seven-game winning streak. With the loss, Chicago is back in the No. 4 spot in the East.
Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith had 17 points apiece, although Anthony didn't play a single minute in the fourth quarter as he rested his injured shoulder. New York built a 16-point second-half lead and fought off every Bulls rally attempt.
Toronto Raptors 116, Detroit Pistons 107
The Raptors started strong and finished strong to nab an important win over the Pistons, moving back into the No. 3 seed in the East thanks to the Bulls' loss. DeMar DeRozan had 30 points and Kyle Lowry added 28 before fouling out. DeRozan also had one nasty dunk over Kyle Singler:
It appeared Toronto would make quick work of Detroit early, putting up 42 points in the first quarter and going up by 16. However, the Pistons fought back and trailed by just one heading into the fourth quarter before the Raptors took control down the stretch.
Greg Monroe had 23 points and 10 rebounds for Detroit. Andre Drummond followed up a 26-point, 26-rebound effort with 14 points and 17 rebounds.
Brooklyn Nets 97, Orlando Magic 88
Tobias Harris had 18 points and seven rebounds off the bench to lead Orlando. Victor Oladipo chipped in 14 points.
Sacramento Kings 106, Minnesota Timberwolves 103
DeMarcus Cousins had 35 points, 15 rebounds and six assists to lead the Kings over the Wolves. However, Cousins also picked up his 16th technical foul on the season, which means an automatic one-game suspension unless it's rescinded.
Memphis Grizzlies 102, Los Angeles Lakers 90
The Grizzlies used a huge third quarter to cruise to victory over the Lakers, who fell to 30 games under .500. Memphis is now a full game ahead of the Phoenix Suns and could clinch the final playoff spot in the West with a win over the Suns on Monday. Mike Conley had 24 points and eight assists in the victory.
Jodie Meeks had 20 points to lead Los Angeles. The Lakers were outrebounded by 20 and committed 17 turnovers.