Jackson’s Heroics Lift Pacers, Prevent History
Posted Nov 30 2006 2:57AM
Indiana 108, Golden State 106
OAKLAND, Calif., Nov. 29 (AP) -- A fourth quarter full of skilled play came down to luck - and Stephen Jackson was standing in exactly the right spot to capitalize.
Jackson grabbed a loose ball and hit a 3-pointer with one second left, and the Indiana Pacers came from behind for a 108-106 victory over the Warriors on Wednesday night, preventing Golden State coach Don Nelson from getting his 1,200th win.
The final assist went to Baron Davis, who attempted to end the game by swatting Danny Granger's missed shot blindly toward the perimeter. It went straight to Jackson, who coolly hit his second late 3-pointer in a back-and-forth final period.
``Came right to me,'' Jackson recalled. ``I knew time was running out when I got it. All I could do was shoot it. Had no time to pass it.''
Jackson recognized his good fortune, but also credited his club's tenacity in sticking with Davis - who barely missed a triple-double - and Monta Ellis, who scored 13 of his 27 points in the fourth quarter. The Pacers were able to play small with the speedy Warriors, but came up big when it mattered with two 3-pointers in the final 34 seconds.
Davis couldn't grab Mike Dunleavy's inbounds pass in the final second, and the Pacers hung on for their second victory midway through a six-game road trip - their longest of the season.
``We needed that win,'' Jackson said. ``That's a game we honestly had to have to turn this season around for us.''
Jamaal Tinsley scored 12 of his season-high 23 points in the fourth quarter, trading baskets with Ellis during a remarkable stretch for both young guards. Al Harrington had 28 points for the Pacers, and Jackson hit two 3-pointers in the final 3 minutes after scoring just two points in the previous 33 minutes.
``It's a big confidence-builder for us,'' coach Rick Carlisle said. ``A lot of times, that's how games are won at the end. It's not always how you script it, but the bounce of the ball and the fact that it's a game of inches, it just plays out that way sometimes.''
Golden State led 106-102 after consecutive late baskets by Davis, who had 24 points, nine rebounds and nine assists. Harrington hit a long 3-pointer with 34 seconds left, and after Davis missed a fallaway jumper, Granger's miss set the final events in motion.
``We were just one big (defensive) stop away from closing the game off,'' said Davis, who sat out four of the last five games with a strained ribcage muscle. ``This one hurts bad, but we've just got to come back. They fought and stayed in it. ... I was just trying to tip the ball to a teammate, hoping there was a teammate lurking in that area.''
The Warriors seemed poised to make Nelson the second coach in NBA history with 1,200 career victories, joining Lenny Wilkens. Instead, Nelson will get another shot Saturday night against Milwaukee.
``The Force must have been with them tonight,'' Nelson said. ``I'm not disappointed with how we played. The plays we ran, we scored on. If you look at the numbers, we should have run away with this game.''
Dunleavy scored 19 points for the Warriors, who nearly hung on despite losing Jason Richardson at halftime because of soreness in his surgically repaired left knee. Richardson scored two points on 1-of-4 shooting while playing less than eight minutes, but said he intends to return Saturday.
Ellis scored nine points in three minutes to open the fourth, but Tinsley then scored 10 in a four-minute span. Golden State went ahead 102-97 on Dunleavy's 3-pointer with 3:43 left, but Jackson answered with a 3-pointer - his first basket of the second half.
Harrington played an inspired game against the Warriors - perhaps because Golden State avidly pursued him for an offseason trade from Atlanta. The Pacers won out, but Harrington showed he would have fit into the Warriors' uptempo style.
Notes: The Warriors played 12 home games in November - a franchise record for one month - and just four road games. After Saturday's visit from the Bucks, nine of their next 12 contests are on the road. ... Davis' last triple-double - 24 points, 11 rebounds and 13 assists against the Lakers on Jan. 14 - was Golden State's first such feat in nearly five years. ... Mickael Pietrus scored 12 points for the Warriors after missing two games with a stomach flu.
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