MIKE DUNLEAVY
Tied his career high with 36 points, 24 in the second half, making 11-of-19 overall and 6-of-9 from the 3-point line, adding six rebounds and four assists.
Name Min. +/- Name Min. +/-
Marquis Daniels 37:06 +8 David Harrison 5:36 +5
Travis Diener 42:00 +20 Troy Murphy 32:36 +9
Ike Diogu DNP --- Jermaine O'Neal DNP ---
Mike Dunleavy 38:42 +11 Andre Owens 3:53 -1
Jeff Foster 17:50 +8 Kareem Rush 41:10 0
Stephen Graham 21:08 -5 Jamaal Tinsley DNP ---
Danny Granger DNP --- Shawne Williams DNP ---
Season plus-minus | Box score
  • Points in the paint: Raptors 52, Pacers 50
  • Fast-break points: Pacers 23, Raptors 12
  • Second-chance points: Raptors 14, Pacers 9
  • Points off turnovers: Raptors 19, Pacers 14
  • Starters scoring: Pacers 92, Raptors 80
  • Bench scoring: Raptors 31, Pacers 30
  • This was the Pacers' third consecutive win on Leap Day, raising their all-time record on Feb. 29 to 3-2.
    The Pacers return home to face the Milwaukee Bucks Sunday in Conseco Fieldhouse. (6 p.m., FSN-Indiana, WFNI-AM 1070).

    Indiana 122, Toronto 111
    Dunleavy dominates in win over Raptors

    At Toronto | Feb. 29, 2008


    It seems the Pacers just needed a little more adversity. There certainly was plenty available.

    Missing three starters thanks to the NBA's decision to suspend leading scorer Danny Granger for one game for throwing an elbow at Chicago's Andres Nocioni Wednesday night, the Pacers turned to Mike Dunleavy, who hit six 3-pointers and tied his career high with 36 points to lead a 122-111 victory over the Raptors Friday in Air Canada Center.

    "This makes everybody in that locker room very happy," said Coach Jim O'Brien. "Our guys have been fighting through some difficulties lately and to see them step up on the road against a good basketball team and win is a great feeling. I'm very proud of them."

    The Pacers (23-36), who snapped a three-game losing streak, also got 23 points from Kareem Rush, who started in Granger's place, 18 from Troy Murphy, a career-high 16 from Stephen Graham and 12 from Marquis Daniels. The latter two performances allowed Indiana's bench to effectively neutralize Toronto's reserves, who held only a 31-30 scoring advantage. In the Raptors' previous three victories over the Pacers this season, their margin in bench points was an overwhelming 162-80.

    Though Toronto (32-25) played most of the game without leading scorer Chris Bosh, who left after tweaking a minor knee injury in the first quarter, the Raptors got strong performances from Andrea Bargnani (27 points, nine rebounds) and Anthony Parker (25 points).

    But the Pacers led most of the game, trailing only once at 4-3 in the opening moments.

    "I thought it was great from the get-go we came out and imposed our will, we imposed the way we wanted to play the game," said Dunleavy, who scored 24 in the second half. "We got up and down, we shot threes, we penetrated, we played so hard. It was a nice way to win and hopefully we can build on this."

    The Pacers built a 74-58 lead early in the third quarter but the Raptors heated up quickly, scoring 15 unanswered points to cut the lead to 74-73. For an Indiana team that had previously blown double-digit leads in all three of its losses to Toronto, this was the moment of truth, and Dunleavy issued the statement, scoring the final 11 points – including a pair of 3-pointers and a three-point play – in a 13-4 run that rebuilt the lead to 87-77.

    "I thought we did a nice job of stepping forward when they closed the gap to one point," said O'Brien. "We increased the lead and our guys showed the type of guts that we needed them to show.

    Toronto got as close as 96-90 early in the fourth but Dunleavy and Daniels combined for 11 points in a 14-3 run that put it away.

    "I thought we just hung in there," Dunleavy said. "We haven't been doing that of late, especially in the fourth quarters but we said tonight just hang in there, no matter what happens and we knew our run would come. We knew when they made their run that we would have one either in the third or the fourth and sure enough we did. It was just perseverance."

    Noteworthy …


  • The suspension snapped Granger's consecutive-games streak snapped at 164. He hadn't missed a game since March 8, 2006.
  • Travis Diener had his first career double-double (10 points, 10 assists).
  • Both Stephen and twin brother Joey, a former first-round pick of Toronto, played in the same game for the first time this season.
  • Williams was not with the team due to personal reasons. With Jermaine O'Neal and Jamaal Tinsley both out with left knee injuries, the Pacers had just 10 players in uniform.

    PACERS COACH JIM O'BRIEN
    (On tonight’s game) "A couple of times out there it looked like a six foot and under league from the old days with both teams going small. I thought we did a nice job of stepping forward when they closed the gap to one point. We increased the lead and I think our guys showed the type of guts that we needed them to show."
    (On Mike Dunleavy) "He knew he had to have a big game. When Danny (Granger) was out, Michael really put his mind to getting a good combination of drives and three-point shots. He showed real good leadership on the bench. He had a very, very fine game."
    (Given what your team has been through recently, how gratifying is the win?) "It makes everybody in that locker room very happy. Our guys are fighting some difficulties lately, so to see them step up on the road against a good basketball team and win is a great feeling. I’m very proud of them."
    PACERS GUARD TRAVIS DIENER
    "We have been so close in our last two games. We have lost a lot of tough ones and to come into an atmosphere like this and get a win is real good, especially when we are even more shorthanded tonight without Shawne (Williams) and Danny Granger. Guys stepped up Marquis (Daniels) played well, Stephen Graham played well off of the bench. The guys came off the bench and gave us a lift.
    (Was there anything the coach said in the huddle) "Keep moving on offence, on defence we were contesting shots. On offence in the fourth quarter we tended to stand a little bit, and then we just concentrated on moving more, driving the ball and we knew we could get the ball in the paint and create. On the upside we were knocking down shots, Mike (Dunleavy) especially was deadly hitting threes. We played well tonight so it feels good to get a win."
    (Thoughts on third quarter) "They cut it to one and luckily for us they couldn’t get over that hump. When they cut it to one I think we got it right back up to seven or eight and that was big for us. Mike (Dunleavy) hit those shots and we got on a roll in the third quarter hitting threes and getting to the line. It is very nice to finally get a win. "
    PACERS FORWARD MIKE DUNLEAVY
    (The pivotal moment in the game was your little surge in the third quarter) "I just tried to stay aggressive the whole night with the amount of guys that we had out. I was just keeping my eye on the rim and I made some shots and put up a lot of points which was big."
    (Is it tough to put out of your mind that you are missing some key players?) "Obviously it is not because we have been like that all year long. It just seems like each game there has been somebody out, maybe more than somebody in a lot of causes. I think it is something that we are used to. This team sticks with it, we have had some tough times, but we all stay together and fight through it."
    (Thoughts on the team’s shooting from the outside) "We have a bunch of guys that can spread the floor and shoot the ball we just went out there tonight and tried to impose our style on the game and just didn’t let up throughout the night. Even when the fourth quarter came around we knew they were going to make a run, we just had to keep playing our way."