Granger, Pacers end losing streakFeb 17, 2012 - 5:11 AM Indianapolis, IN (Sports Network) - Danny Granger scored 32 points, including four clutch free throws down the stretch, as Indiana held off New Jersey, 93-88, at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
David West added 16 points and six rebounds, while Roy Hibbert posted a double-double with 13 points and 11 boards. Paul George contributed 11 points, five rebounds and five assists for the Pacers, who put the skids on a five- game losing streak.
"We needed to pick up our defense if we wanted to win some games, and we did that tonight," said Granger.
Deron Williams led New Jersey with 29 points and Kris Humphries recorded 24 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. MarShon Brooks donated 14 points and five boards for the Nets, who dropped their eighth straight.
"We all love playing basketball," said Humphries. "We are all trying to get better. We are not happy with this."
It took a team in a bigger funk and a healthy Granger to brighten Indiana's fortunes.
In a tight game, it was a quick 6-0 burst that gave the Pacers the wiggle room they needed. Four straight Granger free throws completed the stretch for a 75-69 game, and the lead hovered around that number until the Pacers extended it to 86-77 on Hibbert's jump hook in the lane with just over 2 1/2 minutes to go.
The Nets didn't quit, as Williams rattled off five in a row to trim the margin to 88-84 with 49.6 seconds left, and after Hibbert made just 1-of-2 from the line, Humphries' tip-in drew the Nets within one score, 89-86. However, Granger made four free throws in the final 20 ticks, allowing the Pacers to hold on. Granger was initially questionable for the contest with a sprained left ankle.
The first half was a tale of two quarters with the Nets pushing out to an advantage in the first quarter and the home-standing Pacers rallying back to a stalemate in the second.
New Jersey's lead reached 21-12 on Williams' conventional three-point play that capped an impressive individual stretch, as the point guard tallied 11 consecutive points for the visitors. He converted another layup with just over 2 1/2 minutes to go for a 25-16 edge, and the margin reached 29-18 on Johan Petro's hook shot in the lane. Granger's trey in the closing seconds of the period brought the Pacers within 29-21.
The Pacers used Granger's shot as a jolt of momentum, scoring the first 12 points to start the second period. Granger and George drained three-pointers during the stretch, the latter opening a 33-29 advantage. The Pacers led by as many as six, 50-44, but in a role reversal, it was the Nets with the last laugh. Brooks' three-point play followed by Anthony Morrow's triple knotted the contest at the half.
Neither team gave an inch during the third, trading blows and alternating advantages with Morrow's jumper giving the visitors a 65-64 lead heading into the final stanza.
Indiana made just 39.5 percent of its shots, but Granger connected on half of his attempts (10-of-2)...New Jersey made 46.7 percent of its shots, but committed 19 turnovers...Indiana point guard Darren Collison struggled to five points on just 2-of-8 shooting...The Pacers have won all three meetings this season.
- NEW JERSEY: 88
Feb 16 9:41 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 65
End of 3rd
Feb 16 8:55 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 50
Feb 16 8:12 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 29
End of 1st
Feb 16 7:37 PM
- NEW JERSEY: 0
1st Quarter - 12:00
Feb 16 7:12 PM
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