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Pacers pummel Knicks to stay alive in NBA playoffs

Los Angeles – The Indiana Pacers produced another big win on their home court Friday, routing the New York Knicks 116-103 to force a decisive game seven in their NBA Eastern Conference semi-final series.

Pascal Siakam scored 25 points to lead Indiana’s scoring. Tyrese Haliburton added 15 with nine assists and Myles Turner had 17 points as six Pacers players scored in double figures.

On the brink of elimination after an embarrassing game five defeat in New York, the Pacers played with desperate aggression, out-scoring the Knicks 62-38 in the paint and winning the rebounding battle.

They handed out 35 assists to keep their offense firing, and kept Knicks talisman Jalen Brunson in check for much of the night as they improved to 6-0 at home in this post-season.

They’ll have to follow up on the road, however, if they want to book a clash with the Boston Celtics in the Eastern Conference finals, with the Knicks hosting game seven on Sunday at Madison Square Garden.

The Pacers broke open a close game with a 17-2 scoring run that pushed their lead to 13 points late in the second quarter.

Donte DiVincenzo stopped the rot for New York, draining a three-pointer from the corner that cut the Pacers’ lead to 10, 61-51, at halftime.

Brunson was limited to five points on 2-of-13 shooting in the first half. He found his range after the break, scoring 14 points in the third and finishing with 31.

Miles McBride added 20 for the Knicks, but with Indiana pushing the pace New York never really threatened in the second half.

To make matters worse, Knicks forward Josh Hart departed early in the fourth quarter with what the team called abdominal soreness. He’d clearly been troubled by discomfort around his midriff since the first quarter.

The Knicks were already without OG Anunoby, who missed a fourth straight game with a hamstring strain, just the latest in a series of injuries that had the Knicks without star Julius Randle for the playoffs.

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