Friday , Nov , 03 , 2006 C.Y. Ellis

Pacers begin home slate with talented Hornets

(Sports Network) – A pair of unbeaten teams square off tonight as the Indiana
Pacers host the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets at Conseco Fieldhouse.

Indiana opened its 2006-07 campaign with a hard-fought win on the road over
the Charlotte Bobcats. Jermaine O’Neal scored 18 of his 20 points in the
second half to lead the way.

Sarunas Jasikevicius added 20 points and Stephen Jackson scored 18 for the
Pacers, whose 19-6 run in the third quarter sealed the victory.

Jackson looked sharp after a tumultuous offseason. The swingman was charged
with a felony after being accused of firing a gun outside a strip club last
month. He also was allegedly hit by a car which literally triggered the

The Hornets, meanwhile, have former Pacer and three-time All-Star Peja
Stojakovic on their roster. Stojakovic was traded to Indiana from Sacramento
last January 25 in exchange for forward Ron Artest. He appeared in 40 games
for the Pacers, averaging 19.5 points.

Stojakovic contributed 11 points on 4-of-15 shooting in the Hornets’ 91-87
season-opening victory over the Boston Celtics Wednesday at TD Banknorth
Garden. Reigning Rookie of the Year Chris Paul finished with 20 points, 10
assists and seven rebounds to aid in the win.

David West added 18 points and eight rebounds, while Bobby Jackson had 14
points in his Hornets’ debut.

New Hornets forward Tyson Chandler had just six points and nine rebounds.
Chandler was acquired from Chicago in the offseason.

Indiana went 2-0 against the Hornets last season and has won three of four and
five of the last eight meetings. The Hornets have dropped two in a row and
nine of their past 13 trips to Conseco Fieldhouse.