Pacers vs. Knicks score, highlights, takeaways: Tyrese Haliburton, Indiana protect home court in Game 3 win

The second round of the 2024 NBA playoffs continued on Friday night as the New York Knicks visited the Indiana Pacers for Game 3 of their second-round series at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse. The Knicks entered having won the first two games of the series, but left the night having lost, 111-106. It was a crazy scoring night for Donte DiVincenzo, who dropped 35, including 7-of-11 from 3-point land, but it simply wasn't enough. Indiana took the lead on an Andrew Nembhard stepback 3-pointer and New York had no answer on the other end.

It stands to reason that the Pacers are happy to be back in Indianapolis where they have now won nine straight games. Tyrese Haliburton led the Pacers with 35 points to help Indiana secure its first win. That win ensures that the Pacers have not dropped three straight games since Feb. 2. 

Pacers 111, Knicks 106 (NYK leads series 2-1)

CBS Sports provided live updates, analysis and highlights throughout the game. Follow along below.

Here are some key takeaways from the game:

Nembhard plays hero

This was not Nembhard's best night. He was taken off the Jalen Brunson assignment on the defensive end and could not get his own offense going. As the final seconds of the fourth quarter arrived, he was 1-of-7 from the field and had the same amount of points as rebounds: two. 

When the ball found him at the end of the shot clock with the score tied at 106-106 and 20 seconds remaining, however, he had no time to think about his poor performance. All he could do was get a shot off as quickly as possible, and so he stepped back to create some space and flung the ball to the rim from 30 feet. 


The shot ended up being the game-winner, as the Pacers hung on for a crucial win to trim the series deficit to 2-1. 

Nesmith bothers Brunson

On the Pacers' first defensive possession of Game 3, Aaron Nesmith picked up Jalen Brunson instead of Nembhard. Twenty seconds later, after chasing him around multiple screens, he forced the Knicks star into a tough step-back 3-pointer that did not go down. 

Thus began the most frustrating night of the series for Brunson, who finished with 26 points, but needed as many shots to get there. He shot 10-of-26 from the field, which was his least efficient outing since Game 2 of the first round, and turned the ball over five times. 

Nesmith was extremely physical with Brunson, but everyone has taken that approach in the playoffs. The big difference with this matchup is that Nesmith is 6-foot-6 with a 6-foot-10 wingspan, and that length was very difficult for Brunson to deal with. 

It will be interesting to see if the Pacers keep Nesmith on Brunson the rest of the series, and if so, how Brunson adjusts. 

Knicks waste DiVincenzo's career game

With OG Anunoby joining Julius Randle, Bojan Bogdanovic and Mitchell Robinson on the injured list for Game 3, the Knicks needed someone to step up and provide some offense to supplement Brunson. DiVincenzo did just that. 

The sixth-year guard was unconscious in this game, hitting 3-pointer after 3-pointer en route to a playoff career-high 35 points. This was just the eighth time all season that DiVincenzo has scored 30 points, and the fourth-highest scoring game of his career. His seven 3s also tied a Knicks franchise playoff record. 

DiVincenzo has been excellent in the playoffs, but this was his best full performance. If the Knicks don't end up winning this series, they're going to look back on wasting the "Donte DiVincenzo game" with regret. 

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Final: Pacers 111 -- Knicks 106

What. A. Game. The Pacers defend homecourt and get back in the series with a thrilling five-point win in Game 3. After blowing an early double-digit lead, the Pacers found themselves down by nine in the fourth quarter, but surged back for a last-second win thanks to Andrew Nembhard's game-winning 3-pointer. 

Tyrese Haliburton poured in 35 points to set a new playoff career-high, and added four rebounds and seven assists. He got plenty of help from Myles Turner and Pascal Siakam, who combined for 47 points and 17 rebounds. Aaron Nesmith added 10 points, but he did his best work on the defensive end, where he helped slow down Jalen Brunson.

Donte DiVincenzo had the best game of his postseason career, as he made seven 3s en route to 35 points. Brunson finished with 26 points, but shot just 10-of-26 from the field. It was an impressive effort from the Knicks to take the game down to the wire given their injuries, but this time they came up short. 

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Nembhard with an outrageous go-ahead 3

After Jalen Brunson had tied the time with a 3-pointer, Andrew Nembhard put the Pacers right back in front in the closing seconds with an outrageous shot of his own. As the shot clock was running down, Nembhard had no choice but to hoist a prayer, and he caught all net from way behind the line. 

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Haliburton tweaks his ankle

A few minutes ago, Tyrese Haliburton picked off a pass and went the other way for a layup, but tweaked his ankle in the process. It wasn't obvious in the moment, and he's remained in the game, but he is now limping around during dead balls. This is something to keep an eye on the rest of the way, and perhaps ahead of Game 4 as well

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Third quarter: Knicks 90 -- Pacers 85

What a turnaround from the Knicks, who went down by double digits early in the third, but surged in front at the end of the frame. Donte DiVincenzo has been incredible, and has a playoff career-high 32 points, while Jalen Brunson is up to 16 points and nine assists. 

The Pacers' crowd is extremely restless, and it will be fascinating to see how this young team responds to this situation. 

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DiVincenzo unconscious

Donte DiVincenzo has not slowed down. He just hit his sixth 3-pointer of the game, then converted an and-one in transition and is up to a playoff career-high 32 points. This is just an incredible performance from DiVincenzo on the road for the shorthanded Knicks. 

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Halftime: Pacers 63 -- Knicks 58

It's felt like the Pacers have been in full control all game long, but they enter the break up just five. Time and again, the Knicks have come up with timely baskets to prevent the Pacers from pulling away. You would likely favor the Pacers given the circumstances, but the Knicks are right in this game. 

Tyrese Haliburton has led the way for the home team with five 3-pointers and a game-high 23 points. He's been helped by Myles Turner and Pascal Siakam, who both have 12 points. As has been the case for most of the series, the Pacers have been scoring pretty easily, but their defense has not been good enough. 

Jalen Brunson got off to a rough start due to the pressure of Aaron Nesmith, but he picked it up in the second quarter and has 13 points. Donte DiVincenzo carried them early and has 15 points, while Alec Burks has come off the bench to deliver a much-needed 13 points. 

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DiVincenzo leading the Knicks' offensive attack

Donte DiVincenzo has been terrific this postseason, and knows he has to be even more aggressive tonight with OG Anunoby out and Jalen Brunson at less than 100%. So far, DiVincenzo has stepped up with three 3-pointers and a team-high 15 points to keep the Knicks in the game

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First quarter: Pacers 28 -- Knicks 20

As expected, the Pacers have come out with all sorts of energy, which has helped them jump out to an eight-point lead at the end of the first quarter. Aaron Nesmith has taken the Jalen Brunson assignment tonight and has held the Knicks star to 1-of-5 shooting, while scoring seven points of his own. 

The Knicks are extremely thin tonight with OG Aununoby joining the injured list, and it will be interesting to see if they have the energy to make another comeback. 

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Brunson to play, Achiuwa to start for Anunoby

Knicks star Jalen Brunson was questionable for Game 3 versus the Pacers on Friday night due to a foot injury, but he has been cleared to play. In other injury news for New York, Precious Achiuwa will get the start in place of OG Anunoby, who has been ruled out with a hamstring strain. 

Here's more on the Knicks' injury situation:

Knicks injury updates: Jalen Brunson will play and start Game 3, OG Anunoby out vs. Pacers