Myles Turner
(Marc Lebryk)

Game Rewind: Pacers 138, Celtics 142 (OT)

Thursday, Feb. 23 at 7:00 PM ET at Gainbridge Fieldhouse

Game Recap: Celtics 142, Pacers 138

Game Recap

After a full week off, it's hard to predict what might happen in the first game back after the All-Star break. While rust might be expected, that was far from the case on Thursday night at Gainbridge Fieldhouse, where the Pacers and Celtics treated fans to an absolute shootout.

Myles Turner matched his career high with 40 points and drained a career-best eight 3-pointers, Tyrese Haliburton recorded a double-double, and the Pacers went blow for blow with a Boston team with the best record in the NBA.

In the end, however, the Celtics ultimately prevailed. All-Star Game MVP Jayson Tatum scored the final four points of the contest -- including a clutch putback to seal the win -- to lift Boston (43-17) to a 142-138 overtime victory over Indiana (26-34).

"I just love the fight that our guys brought to the game," Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle said after the game. "They never went away, stayed into it. We weren't perfect. Rebounding continues to be a challenge, but the level of fight and level of battle was tremendous.

"Close-out games like this against the top teams on the planet come down to details -- block outs, loose balls -- very thin margins."

The Pacers had used a 14-3 run to take a 116-114 lead over the Celtics midway through the fourth quarter. The two teams traded the lead on each of their next five possessions, but Boston eventually got a stop after winning a jump ball and former Pacer Malcolm Brogdon knocked down a corner three -- his fifth triple of the night -- to give the visitors a 124-120 lead with 3:11 to play.

Haliburton's stepback three with 2:26 remaining made it a one-point game once again, but on the other end, Buddy Hield was whistled for a foul on Jaylen Brown's 3-point attempt with 2:02 left in the game. Carlisle challenged the call, but was unsuccessful.

Brown made just one of the three free throws, however, then fouled Haliburton on the other end. Indiana's newest All-Star knocked down both free throws to tie the game with 1:41 remaining.

Neither team scored on its next two possessions. Brown then rushed an entry pass to a cutting Al Horford and threw the ball out of bounds, giving Indiana possession with 22.2 seconds remaining and the shot clock turned over.

Haliburton dribbled down the clock against Marcus Smart, the reigning Defensive Player of the Year. Smart contested Haliburton well, forcing an off-balance three that bounced high off the back of the rim and ultimately missed, sending the game to overtime.

In the extra session, Bennedict Mathurin hit an early three that put Indiana up 130-127. But on the other end, he committed his sixth foul on Smart on a three hoisted late in the shot clock. The rookie reacted to the call and was issued a technical foul. Boston hit all four free throws to move back in front.

Smart added a jumper before Turner tied the game at 133 with his eighth 3-pointer of the night with 2:59 remaining in overtime.

Tatum drew a foul and hit one of two shots on the other end, then -- after an Indiana turnover -- Brogdon's left-handed floater just barely soared over Turner's block attempt and into the rim with 2:02 to play.

On the other end, Nesmith corralled the offensive rebound off a missed three and converted a three-point play to tie the game with 1:40 left. The game didn't stay tied for long, as Brogdon raced down the floor and connected with Brown on a go-ahead lob just 13 seconds later.

Haliburton came right back down the court and drew contact on Horford. Boston coach Joe Mazzulla challenged that call, but was also unsuccessful, and Haliburton made both foul shots to tie the game once again with 1:16 remaining.

On the other end, Tatum spun past Haliburton and drew a foul on the right baseline, converting both attempts from the charity stripe with 56.2 seconds to play.

Nesmith had a look at a go-ahead 3-pointer from the left wing, but couldn't get it to fall. Boston secured the rebound and dribbled down the shot clock. Tatum hoisted a three that didn't hit the rim, but Smart caught the rebound and quickly hoisted it back up. That didn't fall, but Tatum raised in from the wing for the crucial putback basket that put Boston up by four with just 10.4 seconds left and that proved to be the difference.

Turner finished with 40 points for the second time in his career, going 13-for-15 from the field, 8-for-10 from 3-point range, and 6-for-7 from the free throw line, and also pulled down 10 rebounds in the loss.

"I was just being aggressive," Turner said. "The three is what presented itself the most tonight and I was just making the most of my opportunities. The guys were getting me the ball in the right spots."

Haliburton added 22 points, 14 assists, and three steals, but it wasn't quite enough for the Blue & Gold to come away with the victory.

The Pacers took an early 8-2 lead on Thursday behind threes from Turner and Haliburton and a jumper from Andrew Nembhard. But Boston countered with a 12-2 run to surge ahead and remained in front for the remainder of the opening quarter.

The Celtics led by as many as nine in the frame, but Indiana closed the quarter on an 8-2 run -- capped by a buzzer-beating three from Chris Duarte -- to cut the deficit to 34-31 after one.

The Pacers pulled within one on T.J. McConnell's basket on the opening possession of the second quarter, but Boston gradually built its lead back up from there. Behind 10 points from Brogdon, the Celtics surged ahead 62-46 with just over three minutes remaining in the first half.

Eight straight points from the Blue & Gold briefly brought the deficit back to single digits and the hosts trailed by 10 at the intermission at 68-58.

Indiana mounted a charge right out of halftime. Turner converted a three-point play off a putback on the first possession of the half. Hield then added a three and Haliburton converted a three-point play of his own before Hield's dunk made it a one-point game just 2:07 into the third quarter.

After a Celtics timeout, Haliburton shook down Horford before knocking down a go-ahead jumper. Tatum answered on the other end with a baseline slam through contact, and the two teams went back and forth over the next several minutes.

The Pacers rained 3-pointers in the third quarter, making eight over the course of the frame. Hield and Turner drained three apiece, Haliburton added a deep one, and even backup center Daniel Theis got in on the act.

The Celtics answered with some elite shot-making of their own, as the two squads traded blows throughout the frame, which featured 12 lead changes and three ties. Brogdon's 3-pointer with just over a minute remaining in the frame put Boston back in front, however, and the visitors entered the fourth quarter holding onto a narrow 100-97 advantage.

Tatum, Brogdon, and Sam Hauser all hit threes over the first three minutes of the fourth quarter, helping the Celtics push their lead back up to nine at 111-102. But the Pacers came back with nine straight points of their own, tying the game on Turner's seventh three of the night.

Tatum's trey from the left corner briefly put Boston back in front, but Mathurin tied the game once again with a three on the other end. Aaron Nesmith then put the Blue & Gold in front, stripping the ball from Smart and racing down for the go-ahead layup to give Indiana a 116-114 lead with 5:48 to play in regulation.

Mathurin had 19 points, seven rebounds, and four assists before fouling out in overtime. Hield tallied 18 points on 4-of-10 3-point shooting.

Tatum had a rough night shooting, going just 1-for-8 from the field in the first half and 3-for-12 from 3-point range, but still managed 31 points, 12 rebounds, and seven assists, going 10-for-11 from the free throw line. Fellow All-Star Brown added 30 points and 11 boards.

Brogdon was brilliant against the team that traded him to Boston this summer, tallying 24 points, five rebounds, and seven assists while going 9-for-12 from the field and 5-for-6 from 3-point range.

The Pacers will now head to Orlando on Saturday for the start of a four-game road trip. Indiana has lost 11 straight road contests, with its last win away from Gainbridge Fieldhouse coming on Dec. 23.

"This is going to be the toughest stretch, toughest test of the season," Turner said of the upcoming trip. "Obviously the most important. We're a team that's struggled on the road and I think is a make-or-break point for us. That's the attitude we have to have. Our back's against the wall right now. We have to go out there and fight and play for it."

Inside the Numbers

Turner's 40 points matched his total from another overtime game -- a 135-134 loss to the Wizards in Washington on Oct. 22, 2021. He had made seven 3-pointers twice before in his career, including on Nov. 23 against Minnesota, but surpassed that with eight treys on Thursday.

Haliburton recorded his team-leading 27th double-double of the season, while Turner registered his 18th.

The Pacers went 22-for-49 (44.9 percent) from 3-point range, one shy of the franchise record for 3-pointers made in a game. They set that mark with 23 threes in Brooklyn on Oct. 29.

The Celtics had a distinct advantage on the boards, outrebounding Indiana 51-37 overall and 20-10 on the offensive glass.

Brogdon, who shot just 35.2 percent from 3-point range over three seasons in Indiana, entered Thursday leading the NBA in 3-point percentage this season at .445 and improved his percentage on Thursday, going 5-for-6 from beyond the arc.

Thursday's game featured 22 lead changes and 14 ties, with 20 lead changes and 13 ties coming after halftime.

Postgame Media Availability: Feb. 23, 2023

You Can Quote Me On That

"You can't ask for a better fight. It was the number one team in the league. We go toe-to-toe with them and take it to overtime. We don't want any pity, but I think we're taking a step in the right direction heading into the last few weeks of the season." -Turner on competing with the Celtics until the final buzzer

"I think we responded really well. I feel like a team like Boston thought that a young team like us would go away, but we didn't. And we took some steps in the right direction." -Pacers guard T.J. McConnell on takeaways from Thursday

"Just high-level basketball there. Especially that third quarter, it felt like nobody was missing. And a lot of their shots were tough fadeaway twos. But kudos to them -- that's one of the best teams in the NBA." -Haliburton on the back-and-forth play down the stretch

"I think just not being one-dimensional. I think in times in the past in the past few years I just kind of settled a lot on the perimeter and kind of floated out there a lot. But I just like the fact that I'm going back to playing like I know I can play inside and out. If teams try to go small and put smalls on me, I can score in the post. I can get to the free throw line, I can score in the mid-range, I'm a three-level scorer." -Turner on the key to his improvement as a scorer this season

"He just played a great game. He was amazingly efficient offensively. A game like this if you're going to be beating Boston, your bigs got to be hitting shots. Myles hit eight threes...and he did damage on the inside as well." -Carlisle on Turner's performance

"He's unreal on both ends of the floor. He's the best shot-blocker in the NBA and his ability to pick-and-pop is such a mismatch." -McConnell on Turner

Stat of the Night

Turner became just the 10th player in NBA history and the first center to score 40 points, grab 10 rebounds, and make eight 3-pointers in a single game. The others to do it are Ray Allen, Kobe Bryant, Stephen Curry, Paul George, James Harden (four times), Kyrie Irving, Damian Lillard, Kevin Love, and Tatum (twice).

  • The Pacers went to overtime for just the second time this season on Thursday. They are 0-2 on the year when playing an extra session. Their other loss was 129-126 at Philadelphia on Jan. 4.
  • Indiana and Boston have split their first two meetings in the regular season, with the road team winning both matchups. They are scheduled to play once more on March 24 in Boston.
  • Hield now has 234 3-pointers made on the season, the most in the NBA this season.
Up Next

The Pacers head to Orlando to take on Paulo Banchero and the Magic on Saturday, Feb. 25 at 7:00 PM ET.


The Pacers return to Gainbridge Fieldhouse to host Joel Embiid and the Philadelphia 76ers on Monday, March 6 at 7:00 PM ET. Find Tickets >>