Indiana Pacers Team Report – March 3
=== Indiana Pacers Team Report – March 3 ===
(Sports Network) – The Indiana Pacers try to make it three straight wins this
evening when they continue their four-game road tip in Los Angeles against the
Clippers at the Staples Center.
Indiana got its trip off in fine fashion on Tuesday, as Reggie Miller scored
21 points to lead the Pacers to a 96-88 win over Golden State at The Arena.
Miller ended 5-of-10 from three-point range for the Pacers, who have won five
of their last six games. Al Harrington had 16 points and 12 boards, while
Jonathan Bender scored 14 in the win.
Prior to the game, the Pacers activated All-Star forward Ron Artest from the
injured list. Artest, who had been sidelined after undergoing surgery on
February 19 to repair a ligament tear in his left thumb, started in the
contest and scored 12 points on 3-of-9 shooting.
There was some concern that Artest could miss the remainder of the season, but
he began working out after an examination Monday in New York and was cleared
to play with a protective padding around the thumb.
The Pacers were forced to play the final 3:32 of the contest without All-Star
Jermaine O’Neal, who was ejected along with Golden State’s Cliff Robinson
after two separate incidents on either end of the court.
O’Neal ended with 12 points and seven boards. He also had three blocks to
extend his streak to 37 games with a swat.
At 44-16, the Pacers are 6 1/2 games ahead of the New Jersey Nets for the top
spot in the East and holds a 7 1/2 game advantage over the Detroit Pistons for
the Central Division lead.
Indiana, which is a league-best 15-6 against the Western Conference, has won
four of five and six of nine on the road and is 20-10 away from home this
Indiana defeated the Clips earlier in the year and has won four straight and
six of the last seven matchups in the series. The Pacers have also won seven
of their last nine in LA against the Clippers.