The Herald Bulletin

Afternoon Update

Sports

January 17, 2014

Pacers roll over Knicks

(Continued)

That has been a league-wide problem for Pacers foes, and not just against Stephenson.

Indiana won its third straight to maintain its grip on the NBA's best record, extend its Eastern Conference lead over Miami to four games and continue its claim to the league's best home record, 20-1.

The Pacers aren't slowing down, either. They beat Washington by 27 on Friday, Sacramento by 24 on Tuesday and handed what was one of the league's hottest teams its most embarrassing road loss of the season.

For the most part, Indiana has relied on its staunch defense. Stephenson and Paul George have suddenly given Indiana a devastating offensive punch, too.

George added 25 points and seven rebounds on a night six players scored in double figures. The Pacers produced season highs for total points and points in a half (63) for the second straight game, and they even heeded the advice of team president Larry Bird, by cutting down their turnovers to a season-low five.

"We have set a goal, and we want to be the No. 1 seed (in the East)," Stephenson said. "Every night I try to bring something to the table."

The Knicks just couldn't keep up.

Carmelo Anthony finished with 28 points, nine in the first six minutes and 18 in the first quarter when it was still a game. Tyson Chandler had 13 points and nine rebounds, while Raymond Felton and J.R. Smith each had 12. Smith played nearly 28 minutes after being benched in two of the Knicks previous four games.

"They're a good team, but I don't think they're 30 points better than our team," Woodson said after the rematch of last spring's conference semifinals, which Indiana also won. "We were awful."

Things started well for New York as Anthony pushed them to a 16-8 lead.

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