for this game

Pacers keep Memphis winless in Indiana

Feb 15, 2007 - 4:52 AM INDIANAPOLIS (Ticker) -- Jermaine O'Neal had 23 points and nine rebounds as the Indiana Pacers extended their home domination of the Memphis Grizzlies with a 114-104 victory.

The Grizzlies franchise has yet to record a win in this city, tumbling to its 11th straight loss.

Danny Granger, showing no ill-effects after being taken off the court on a stretcher with a head injury in Sunday's game against the Clippers, came off the bench and finished with 21 points on 8-of-17 shooting.

"We got the win. We're on a two-game win streak," Granger said. "We need to keep doing it after the break."

The Pacers now have six days off because of the All-Star break, allowing Granger to fully recover from his fall.

"It's just a sore neck, which I've had before," he said. "No big deal."

With Granger leading the way, Indiana's bench came to life against Memphis, finishing with 65 points. Reserve Marquis Daniels added 18 points, including 10 in the fourth quarter as the Pacers pulled ahead to stay.

"Give the bench a lot of credit," Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said. "If we can establish our bench, it can be a strong point of who we want to be."

Memphis rookie Rudy Gay recorded his first career 30-point game, ending with 31 points on 13-of-19 shooting, including 3-of-3 from 3-point range and a couple of spectacular dunks.

"I was taking good shots and they fell," Gay said. "I felt pretty comfortable, because I've been put in this position a couple of times and I've learned to take advantage of it."

Pau Gasol recorded a double-double with 19 points and 13 boards for Memphis.

The Grizzlies held a 56-51 halftime lead, scoring the final five points of the half after a 10-0 Indiana run had put the Pacers up by three with 6:19 left in the second.

Memphis started to unravel in the third quarter as it surrendered 36 points, falling behind, 87-83, heading into the final 12 minutes. Mike Dunleavy scored 10 of his 14 points in the second half, including a 3-pointer with 5:40 left in the fourth quarter to cap an 11-2 Indiana run that put the game away for good.

"We hit a wall in the second half," Memphis interim coach Tony Barone said. "That's life in the NBA. We had a back-to-back, we had to travel, and that's just the way it is. We didn't have great energy in the second half."

Memphis was shorthanded on the inside following Tuesday's trade of center Jake Tsakalidis to the Houston Rockets for veteran forward Scott Padgett. Indiana exploited it and won the battle of points in the paint, 58-46.

"Before the game, we talked about (points in the paint)," Barone said. "We have not been able to contain the good scorers in the paint. We've not stepped up individually or as a team. It's an area that we've got to improve or it's going to be a continual struggle."

The victory gives the Pacers two wins in a row heading into the All-Star break.

"We're still growing," Jermaine O'Neal said. "Hopefully guys will go to the (All-Star) break and get their minds clear and prepare themselves.

"We don't have a lot of games after the break to prove ourselves, so all of the excuses about why we win and why we lose have to be out the window. We just have to buckle down and get ready for the real part of the season."

Indiana will come back from the break in fourth place in the Central division and sixth place in the Eastern Conference.

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