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Milwaukee at Indiana

O'Neal provides 26 points, 13 boards as Pacers rally past Bucks

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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INDIANAPOLIS -- The Indiana Pacers may not yet have an answer for the zone defense. They certainly have mastered the art of comebacks.

The Pacers scored the final 14 points Tuesday night, and used a strong offensive performance from Jermaine O'Neal and an even better defensive effort from Jamaal Tinsley to get past Milwaukee 93-88. It was the second time in four days Indiana rallied to defeat the Bucks.

"Jamaal willed us to win," coach Rick Carlisle said. "When his energy is up defensively, the whole group behind him is ready to go. Without him, we could not have won this game."

The Pacers expected this one to come down to offense, though.

Since they last played, at Milwaukee, the Pacers spent three days working on how to beat the Bucks' zone that caused so many problems Saturday.

For a while, it appeared they had a solution -- beating the Bucks to the soft spots, driving to the middle and finding O'Neal open for shots. But until the decisive run, the Pacers struggled to make it work in the second half.

The trio of O'Neal, Tinsley and Stephen Jackson finally bailed them out.

O'Neal finished with 26 points and 13 rebounds, including the final two free throws to seal the win. Tinsley added 17 points and created havoc on defense. Jackson scored five key points in the Pacers' final charge, and Al Harrington, who missed Saturday's game, returned to the lineup with seven points and a career-high 18 rebounds.

Maurice Williams finished with 22 points to lead the Bucks, while the NBA's second-leading scorer, Michael Redd, had 21 - well below his season average of 30.3

But it was a late scoring drought that sent Milwaukee to its seventh loss in eight games.

"We were not able to score and weren't getting some close calls," Bucks coach Terry Stotts said. "We played well in the first 40 minutes, but we weren't able to close them out."

It was Indiana's second win in five games.

From the early moments, the Pacers hardly resembled the team that struggled so badly Saturday.

With a better inside-outside combination that included five 3-pointers in the first half, and a stronger inside presence from O'Neal and Harrington, the Pacers would not let the Bucks pull away as they did Saturday in building a 17-point first-half lead.

Instead, they stayed close throughout the half and then appeared to take control by opening the second half on a 14-2 run that gave Indiana a 62-51 lead.

The momentum didn't last long.

"It was one of the more bizarre games I've been involved with, regular season or playoffs," Carlisle said. "It's a game where you have to find a way to win."

Both teams thought they had done enough.

Milwaukee closed the third quarter on a 10-0 run and scored the first four points of the fourth quarter to rebuild a 75-68 advantage, and it still led 88-79 with 3:06 left.

Suddenly, everything changed.

The Bucks shooters went cold, they mishandled the ball and the Pacers took advantage.

Tinsley started the comeback by making 1-of-2 free throws, and Marquis Daniels followed that with a layup to make it 88-82. Jackson scored the next five points to get the Pacers within one, and when Tinsley banked in a 10-footer with 31.5 seconds to go, the Pacers finally had the lead.

Darrell Armstrong and O'Neal closed out the victory by making four straight free throws, and for the second time in four days, the Bucks lamented what went wrong.

"They were aggressive getting to the free throw line at the end of the game, made some key 3s and I think Tinsley was aggressive," Redd said. "And we went into a funk. We couldn't score, couldn't get any calls going our way. It was just a bad last two or three minutes for us."

Notes

  • Jackson came off the bench for the second straight game.
  • The Bucks held Indiana to 44.3 percent shooting despite having the league's second-worst defensive field goal percentage entering the game.
  • It's only the third time this season Redd has not led Milwaukee in scoring.
  • Milwaukee was 14-of-14 from the free throw line, only the second time in the league this season to finish a game without a miss.
  • Cleveland, Detroit, Indiana and Orlando are the only Eastern Conference teams with records above .500.
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Jermaine O'Neal (26, 13) powers the Pacers' late rally over the Bucks by scoring eight points in the third.  (AP)
Jermaine O'Neal (26, 13) powers the Pacers' late rally over the Bucks by scoring eight points in the third. (AP)

Scoreboard
Milwaukee (3-8) 2524221788
Indiana (6-5) «2325202593
MIL:M. Williams 22 Pts
MIL:D. Gadzuric 11 Reb
MIL:M. Williams 9 Ast
IND:J. O'Neal 26 Pts
IND:A. Harrington 18 Reb
IND:J. Tinsley 9 Ast
Players of the Game
IndianaMilwaukee

J. O'Neal

M. Williams
PtsRebsAstPtsRebsAst
261312259
Milwaukee
M. Redd, SG459-242-206221
M. Williams, PG377-126-659222
A. Bogut, C337-140-081214
R. Patterson, SF213-50-01016
E. Ilyasova, SF211-80-07043
C. Bell, SG313-53-33129
D. Gadzuric, C285-133-3110413
B. Skinner, PF120-30-04110
S. Blake, PG120-10-01110
B. Simmons, SFDid Not Play
L. Greer, PGDid Not Play
C. Villanueva, PFDid Not Play
D. Markota, PFDid Not Play
D. Noel, SFDid Not Play
C. McCray, SGDid Not Play
Totals 35-8514-1440191988
 41.2%100.0% 
Indiana
J. O'Neal, PF3910-146-7131026
D. Granger, SF384-140-040410
A. Harrington, C333-111-218237
J. Tinsley, PG336-123-469317
M. Daniels, SG221-32-31414
S. Jackson, SG334-112-312310
J. Foster, C202-20-02324
S. Jasikevicius, PG144-90-112110
D. Armstrong, PG91-32-21225
M. Baston, PFDid Not Play
D. Harrison, CDid Not Play
J. Powell, PFDid Not Play
O. Greene, PGDid Not Play
R. Marshall, SFDid Not Play
S. Williams, SFDid Not Play
Totals 35-7916-2247251993
 44.3%72.7% 
Other Games
Mem 94 Final
Cle 97
Det 97 Final
Phi 87
Mia 86 Final
NO 101
Wash 80 Final
Dal 107
Chi 109 Final
Den 113
LAC 101 Final
LAL 105