KEITH McLEOD
In his second consecutive start, tied his season high with 17 points, adding four assists, four rebounds and a steal.
RICK CARLISLE
"Listen, these guys are hard to play no matter what because they're going to play hard, they're going to be persistent, their quickness and athleticism and ability to disrupt, defensively, is always going to present problems. We had some bad turnovers in the fourth but we held it together and pulled out a win and I'm proud of the guys for being able to do that because it was pretty hairy there for a few minutes."
Points in the Paint:
Celtics 48, Pacers 40
Fast-break points:
Celtics 17, Pacers 16
2nd-chance points:
Celtics 11, Pacers 7
Points off turnovers:
Celtics 30, Pacers 24
Starters scoring:
Pacers 84, Celtics 62
Bench scoring:
Celtics 36, Pacers 21
On back-to-back nights in the absence of starter Jamaal Tinsley, backup point guards Keith McLeod and Darrell Armstrong combined for 54 points and 19 assists.
The Pacers open a three-game road trip Tuesday in Philadelphia against Andre Iguodala and the 76ers (7 p.m., FSN-Indiana).
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  • INDIANA 105, BOSTON 98
    Pacers Display Warrior Mentality

    By Conrad Brunner | April 7, 2007


    The long-term effects of the midseason trade with Golden State will remain the subject of debate among Pacers fans for years. For one night, however, that Warrior mentality saved the Pacers.

    Mike Dunleavy, Keith McLeod, Troy Murphy and Ike Diogu, the four players acquired in the deal, combined for 62 points on 22-of-33 shooting (66.7 percent) as the Pacers fought past a scrappy, pesky, annoying and ultimately undermanned Boston team 105-98 Saturday at Conseco Fieldhouse.

    As a result, they have their first winning streak, albeit a modest two games, in two months. With three wins in their last four, the Pacers (34-42) remained one game behind Orlando (35-41) in the battle for the final playoff spot in the East. They're two games behind seventh-place New Jersey (36-40).

    Missing their top three scorers, with just eight healthy players – and one of those, starting center Kendrick Perkins, was running a fever -- the Celtics (23-53) dropped their third in a row and fell to 11-24 on the road.


    PLUSES

    The Pacers shot better than 50 percent for the third game in a row (54.4) and had six players score in double figures led by Dunleavy's 22. Dunleavy also had eight rebounds, seven assists and two steals. McLeod was 5-of-8 from the field for his 17 with four assists and four rebounds. Murphy hit all six of his shots for 16 points, adding four assists and three steals. Danny Granger scored 15 with 10 rebounds and Jermaine O'Neal battled another difficult shooting night against a swarming defense for 14 points and 14 rebounds. Darrell Armstrong scored 10 off the bench. The Pacers had 23 assists and outrebounded the Celtics 42-36.
    MINUSES
    Turnovers were again a problem, particularly in the fourth quarter when eight miscues fueled a Boston comeback. The Pacers tied their season high with 26 turnovers, six by O'Neal, that led to 30 Celtics points. Allan Ray (a career-high 22 points), Sebastian Telfair (21 points, 8-of-12 shooting off the bench) and Rajon Rondo (14 points, eight rebounds, eight assists, seven steals) caused major problems with their quickness. Leon Powe scored 15 off the bench and Ryan Gomes had 12 points and nine rebounds. Gerald Green scored 12 but shot 4-of-18.
    MOMENTS
    With Boston missing nine of its first 10 shots, the Pacers got off to a fast start and lead 32-18 early in the second quarter. But Telfair came off the bench to give the Celtics life, sparking a 14-7 run with nine points as the visitors closed to 39-32. A pair of 3-pointers from Ray keyed a 10-3 run spanning intermission that brought the deficit down to 51-46, but Murphy got hot, scoring nine in a row in an 11-point Indiana push that made it 62-46.

    The Pacers appeared to be cruising home, up 88-75 with 7:08 remaining, but Boston's pressing, trapping defense scrambled the home team for a few minutes and led to a 9-2 run that cut the lead to 90-84 with 4:41 left. McLeod then made two huge plays, converting driving three-point plays on the Pacers' next two possessions to push the lead back to double-figures and there would be no further serious threat.


    TIDBITS
  • Tinsley missed his second game in a row with a sore right elbow.
  • Jeff Foster missed his third in a row with lower back spasms.
  • The Celtics were missing eight players, including top three scorers Paul Pierce (left elbow), Wally Szczerbiak (left ankle) and Al Jefferson (left knee).