Basketball - Pacers explode to victory over Celtics

The powerful Indiana Pacers toyed with the Boston Celtics, then exploded after half-time en route to a 97-82 victory.

Reuters
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Indiana Pacers small forward Paul George (24) grabs a rebound (Reuters)

Pacers 97, Celtics 82

The win, the second straight after their first loss of the season, moved the Pacers to 11-1 on the season.

They entered the game tied with the San Antonio Spurs for the NBA's best record.

The rebuilding Celtics lost their sixth game in a row to fall to 4-10.

The Celtics led by eight at the half but then scored only eight in the third quarter.

Forward Paul George led the Pacers with 27 points, 22 in the second half.

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Raptors 96, Wizards 88

Guard DeMar DeRozan and forward Rudy Gay scored 17 points each as the Toronto Raptors defeated the Washington Wizards 96-88 for their second win in a row.

The Raptors had to overcome a season-best 37 points by Wizards (4-8) guard John Wall.

The Raptors (6-7) lead the NBA Atlantic Division for the first time since 2007.

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Suns 98, Bobcats 91

Forward Channing Frye scored 20 points and the Phoenix Suns snapped a four-game losing streak with a 98-91 victory over the Charlotte Bobcats.

The Suns raced to a 55-44 halftime lead, pushed the margin to 14 in the third quarter and led by as many as 21 points in the fourth quarter.

The Bobcats got as close as five in the final 15 seconds as play got sloppy in the final few minutes, but they never seriously threatened.

Phoenix are 6-6 and Charlotte fell to 6-7.

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76ers 115, Bucks 107 (overtime)

Guard-forward Evan Turner scored eight of his 27 points in overtime as the Philadelphia 76ers beat the Milwaukee Bucks 115-107 to snap a four-game losing streak.

Center-forward Spencer Hawes added 25 points and 12 rebounds for the Sixers (6-8), who erased a 10-point deficit in the final 2:08 of regulation.

Hawes' three-pointer from the left corner with 1.7 seconds left, a shot he made while jumping off one foot with Milwaukee's (2-9) Gary Neal draped all over him, forced the extra period.

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Hawks 96, Pistons 89

Point guard Jeff Teague had 18 points and nine assists to lead the Atlanta Hawks to their second victory over the Detroit Pistons in three nights, 96-89, at The Palace.

Center Al Horford supplied 17 points and 11 rebounds while forward Paul Millsap and guard Kyle Korver added 14 points apiece. Forward DeMarre Carroll added 12 points for the Hawks (8-5).

Second-year forward Kyle Singler had a career-high 22 points for Detroit (4-8) while center Andre Drummond notched his seventh consecutive double-double with 15 points and 16 rebounds.

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Timberwolves 111, Nets 81

Forward Corey Brewer and point guard Ricky Rubio scored five points each during a game-icing 16-0 third-quarter run as the Minnesota Timberwolves cruised past the Brooklyn Nets 111-81.

Guard Kevin Martin and forward Kevin Love led the Wolves with 17 points each, the duo combining for the other six points in Minnesota's decisive run.

All five Wolves starters scored in double figures, with Brewer and center Nikola Pekovic chipping in 15 each and Rubio adding 12.

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Pelicans 104, Cavaliers 100

Guard Eric Gordon hit a three-pointer from the left baseline with 31.7 seconds left and the New Orleans Pelicans used a 14-2 fourth-quarter run to erase a 12-point deficit in the final 4:44 to defeat the Cleveland Cavaliers 104-100.

Gordon's long-range jumper, which gave him 19 points, came with the Pelicans trailing 98-97 and transformed a cold-shooting night. Gordon had missed his first four three-point shots until that point.

Cavaliers guard Kyrie Irving led all scorers with 22 points, but the Cavs dropped their seventh of nine games to drop to 4-9.

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Spurs 102, Grizzlies 86

The San Antonio Spurs extended their winning streak to nine games with a 102-86 win over the Memphis Grizzlies.

The Grizzlies' All-Star center, Marc Gasol, left the game with a knee injury.

Point guard Tony Parker led the Spurs (11-1) with 20 points.

Center Tiago Splitter finished with 17 points, guard Manu Ginobili scored 15 and forward Kawhi Leonard had 12.

The Spurs' bench out-scored the Grizzlies' (7-6) bench 45-18.

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