OKC
IND

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Pacers rally from 19-point deficit to beat Thunder 108-106

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) Paul George figured to be the feature attraction in his second visit to Indiana since a blockbuster trade two years ago.

Domantas Sabonis and Wesley Matthews upstaged the former Pacer on Thursday night.

Matthews tipped in a basket with 1.8 seconds left and Indiana rallied from a 19-point deficit to beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 108-106. Sabonis added 26 points against this former team.

''Man, this team fights. That's one of the big reasons why I chose to come here,'' Matthews said. ''We fight, we compete. No lead is too much. We needed a win against a playoff team, and that's what we've got to do going forward.''

Without All-Star guard Victor Oladipo, who the underdog Pacers got in the blockbuster deal that sent George to the Thunder in July 2017, Indiana fought its way back over the final 15 minutes behind the other player it acquired in the deal, Sabonis, and Matthews, who the Pacers signed last month as Oladipo's replacement.

It was Indiana's second-largest comeback this season.

They did it against George, a six-time All-Star who shrugged off resounding boos to score 36 points, and Russell Westbrook, who added his 27th triple-double of the season but missed a 3-pointer from beyond the top of the key as the buzzer sounded.

Westbrook finished with 19 points, 14 rebounds and 11 assists.

George was terrific for the first 47 minutes.

He scored 25 points in the first half and completed a three-point play to give the Thunder a 73-54 lead with 7:18 left in the third quarter. He even made the tying 3-pointer with 1:49 left in the game and two free throws to give Oklahoma City a 106-104 lead with 1:13 to go.

It was a different story in the final minute.

George turned the ball over twice, slipped as the Pacers started their final possession and got knocked to the floor on a pick - giving Indiana the one-man advantage that allowed Matthews to free himself for the putback on Bojan Bogdanovic's errant 16-footer.

''At the end of close games, there's going to be contact,'' Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. ''In those situations you just have to play through that.''

Matthews finished with 16 points and seven rebounds to help Indiana cut its magic number for clinching a playoff spot to one.

The Pacers' second straight win also kept them in third place in the Eastern Conference while the Thunder slipped into a tie for fifth in the West.

''Domantas really came in during that second half and established us,'' coach Nate McMillan said. ''I thought we did a good job, especially late, pressuring their dribble, getting some deflections and really disrupting their rhythm defensively. That is what we have to be about and, really, it came at the right time for us.''

TIP-INS

Thunder: Westbrook has 131 triple-doubles in his career. ... Steven Adams had 17 points and eight rebounds. ... Oklahoma City went 3-3 during a stretch in which they played five road games. ... The Thunder fell to 6-5 on the second night of back-to-backs this season.

Pacers: Darren Collison had 17 points, six rebounds and seven assists. ... The Pacers committed 16 turnovers. ... Bogdanovic scored 23 points and extended his streak of consecutive games in double figures to 24 and his career best single-season total of 20-point games to 28. ... Tyreke Evans missed his second straight game for personal reasons. McMillan said he expects Evans to travel with the team later this week.

BOO-BIRDS

George brushed off the boos by saying he thought his second trip back to Indiana was tamer than his first.

Pacers fans didn't just boo, though.

At one point, they chanted ''Zion hates you,'' a reference to the blown out shoe that forced Duke star Zion Williamson to miss a few games. At another, they serenaded George with ''We don't miss you.''

George took it in stride.

''I actually think things seem more normal now,'' he said. ''I feel like things have died down.''

UP NEXT

Thunder: Hosts the Western Conference-leading Warriors on Saturday.

Pacers: Begin a crucial four-game road trip at Denver on Saturday.

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Key Players
R. Westbrook
0 PG
D. Sabonis
11 PF
24.7 Min. Per Game 24.7
14.1 Pts. Per Game 14.1
2.8 Ast. Per Game 2.8
9.2 Reb. Per Game 9.2
43.0 Field Goal % 59.8
42.9 Three Point % 59.8
65.1 Free Throw % 72.9
  OKC team rebound 0:00
  Full timeout called 0:01
  Offensive rebound by Wesley Matthews 0:01
  Full timeout called 0:23
  Bad pass turnover on Paul George, stolen by Darren Collison 0:24
  Offensive foul on Bojan Bogdanovic 0:27
  Out of bounds turnover on Paul George 0:38
+ 2 Domantas Sabonis made finger-roll layup 0:57
  Shooting foul on Bojan Bogdanovic 1:13
  Defensive rebound by Dennis Schroder 1:24
+ 3 Paul George made 3-pt. jump shot 1:49
Team Stats
Points 106 108
Field Goals 38-86 (44.2%) 37-82 (45.1%)
3-Pointers 14-30 (46.7%) 7-22 (31.8%)
Free Throws 16-20 (80.0%) 27-32 (84.4%)
Total Rebounds 52 50
Offensive 8 6
Defensive 36 33
Team 8 11
Assists 24 24
Steals 11 11
Blocks 5 4
Turnovers 17 16
Fouls 29 17
Technicals 1 2
19 PTS, 14 REB, 11 AST
26 PTS, 7 REB, 4 AST
1234T
away team logo Thunder 42-27 29342518106
home team logo Pacers 44-25 22283127108
Team Stats
away team logo Thunder 42-27 114.4 PPG 48.2 RPG 23.0 APG
home team logo Pacers 44-25 107.9 PPG 43 RPG 25.9 APG
Key Players
P. George SF 28.2 PPG 8.2 RPG 4.2 APG 44.0 FG%
D. Sabonis PF 14.2 PPG 9.2 RPG 2.8 APG 59.3 FG%
Top Scorers
P. George SF 36 PTS 6 REB 5 AST
D. Sabonis PF 26 PTS 7 REB 4 AST
44.2 FG% 45.1
46.7 3PT FG% 31.8
80.0 FT% 84.4
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB +/- FPTS
P. George 36 6 5 10/23 6/11 10/12 3 35 2 0 5 0 6 -5 49
R. Westbrook 19 14 11 8/18 1/5 2/2 2 38 4 2 4 1 13 -1 57
S. Adams 17 8 1 8/14 0/0 1/2 3 33 0 0 4 3 5 -7 23
T. Ferguson 6 1 0 2/4 2/3 0/0 5 21 1 1 0 0 1 +9 9
J. Grant 3 2 1 1/4 0/0 1/2 4 30 2 2 2 1 1 -6 9
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB +/- FPTS
P. George 36 6 5 10/23 6/11 10/12 3 35 2 0 5 0 6 -5 49
R. Westbrook 19 14 11 8/18 1/5 2/2 2 38 4 2 4 1 13 -1 57
S. Adams 17 8 1 8/14 0/0 1/2 3 33 0 0 4 3 5 -7 23
T. Ferguson 6 1 0 2/4 2/3 0/0 5 21 1 1 0 0 1 +9 9
J. Grant 3 2 1 1/4 0/0 1/2 4 30 2 2 2 1 1 -6 9
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB +/- FPTS
A. Nader 10 1 0 3/6 2/5 2/2 2 16 1 0 0 0 1 +2 12
M. Morris 8 3 0 3/6 2/4 0/0 2 17 1 0 0 0 3 +4 12
D. Schroder 7 5 5 3/10 1/2 0/0 4 32 0 0 0 1 4 -11 22
N. Noel 0 4 1 0/1 0/0 0/0 3 14 0 0 2 2 2 +5 4
P. Patterson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Roberson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Burton - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Grantham - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
H. Diallo - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
R. Felton - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 106 44 24 38/86 14/30 16/20 29 236 11 5 17 8 36 -10 197
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB +/- FPTS
B. Bogdanovic 23 4 5 7/16 2/5 7/11 2 34 0 0 2 0 4 +7 35
D. Collison 17 6 7 6/11 0/1 5/5 2 38 4 0 4 1 5 +3 37
W. Matthews 16 7 2 6/15 4/7 0/0 2 35 2 0 4 2 5 +5 25
T. Young 11 4 2 5/10 0/4 1/1 2 32 3 1 3 2 2 -9 20
M. Turner 10 6 2 4/10 0/2 2/2 2 31 0 1 2 1 5 +4 19
Starters PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB +/- FPTS
B. Bogdanovic 23 4 5 7/16 2/5 7/11 2 34 0 0 2 0 4 +7 35
D. Collison 17 6 7 6/11 0/1 5/5 2 38 4 0 4 1 5 +3 37
W. Matthews 16 7 2 6/15 4/7 0/0 2 35 2 0 4 2 5 +5 25
T. Young 11 4 2 5/10 0/4 1/1 2 32 3 1 3 2 2 -9 20
M. Turner 10 6 2 4/10 0/2 2/2 2 31 0 1 2 1 5 +4 19
Bench PTS REB AST FG 3PT FT PF MIN STL BLK TO OREB DREB +/- FPTS
D. Sabonis 26 7 4 7/12 0/0 12/13 3 27 0 1 0 0 7 +14 42
C. Joseph 3 3 0 1/5 1/3 0/0 2 22 2 1 1 0 3 -2 8
D. McDermott 2 2 1 1/3 0/0 0/0 1 13 0 0 0 0 2 -7 6
T. Leaf 0 0 1 0/0 0/0 0/0 1 4 0 0 0 0 0 -5 2
T. Evans - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
K. O'Quinn - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
V. Oladipo - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
D. Reed - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
E. Sumner - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Holiday - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
A. Johnson - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Total 108 39 24 37/82 7/22 27/32 17 236 11 4 16 6 33 +10 194