NBA Game Summary - Cleveland at Indiana
(Wednesday, April 6th)
Final Score: Indiana 98, Cleveland 77
Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - Reggie Miller scored all of his 17 points in the decisive first half as the Indiana Pacers pounded the listless Cleveland Cavaliers, 98-77, in a key matchup of playoff contenders at Conseco Fieldhouse.
Miller went 6-of-7 from the field, including 3-of-3 from three-point distance, in 15 first-half minutes for Indiana, which won its sixth straight and moved two games ahead of Cleveland for the sixth spot in the Eastern Conference playoff standings.
"(Miller) should not retire," said Cavs coach Brendan Malone. "The way he's playing right now is as good as I've seen him."
"I thought we played really well," Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said. "(Miller) hit a couple (of three-pointers) from the corner that got us juiced a little bit. We needed to have 10 guys play well tonight and we did."
Among them were Stephen Jackson, who scored a game-high 23 points, and Fred Jones and Austin Croshere, who chipped in 11 points apiece in the win.
Leading the Cavaliers, who have lost six of nine overall and 13 of their last 14 road games, was LeBron James with 20 points on 9-of-18 shooting.
Playing without All-Star center Zydrunas Ilgauskas, who left Tuesday's game with a sprained finger, Cleveland received 12 points from Drew Gooden while Jeff McInnis contributed 10 in the loss.
The Cavaliers are one game ahead of eighth-seeded Philadelphia in the playoff race.
The first seven minutes provided back-and-forth action before Indiana closed the first quarter on an 11-4 run and opened the second frame on an 8-2 burst to move in front by double figures, 34-24. Indiana would outscore the Cavs 23-10 in the second quarter and seize control of the game.
Behind Miller's 17 points and Cleveland's dismal 28 percent shooting performance, the Pacers went into halftime leading 49-32.
"This game basically was over in the second quarter," Gooden said.
Things were never in doubt after intermission, as the Pacers led 77-57 through three quarters and did not see their advantage cut to less than double digits i the final 12 minutes.
Cleveland hit just 30-of-83 field goal attempts (36 percent) and was outrebounded 46-40.
The Pacers began a three-game homestand Wednesday and will host Washington Friday...Indiana guard Jamaal Tinsley remains out indefinitely with a bruised left foot...The Pacers have won nine of their last 12 contests...Cleveland started a two-game road trip Wednesday that will take them to Philadelphia Friday...Robert Traylor started at center for Cleveland in Ilgauskas' place.
04/06 23:09:28 ET