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Anthony's game-winner snaps Pacers' streak
By Conrad Brunner
For the second time in as many meetings, Carmelo Anthony and Danny Granger exchanged shots in the final seconds with the game on the line.
This time, Anthony got the better of the duel.
Anthony's 19-foot jump shot over Danny Granger with 4.9 seconds left lifted New York to a hard-fought 110-109 victory over the Indiana Pacers before 13,542 Sunday night in Conseco Fieldhouse.
The Pacers had a chance for a game-winner of their own but Anthony got a hand on Danny Granger's 19-footer and the ball wound up in the hands of Darren Collison, who missed an off-balance desperation toss at the buzzer.
It was eerily similar to the finish on March 15 in Conseco Fieldhouse, when Anthony scored with 7.8 seconds left to tie the game but Granger answered with the game-winner, from almost the same spot on the floor as Sunday's last attempt, to give the Pacers a 119-117 win.
Granger led five Indiana players in double figures with 20. Anthony had a game-high 34 for the Knicks.
The Pacers had winning streaks of two overall and five at home come to an end, finishing their home schedule with a 24-17 record. Indiana dropped to 37-44 overall, 20-17 under interim coach Frank Vogel. The Knicks won their seventh in a row, one short of their season high and improved to 42-38 overall, one full game of Philadelphia in the battle for sixth place in the Eastern Conference. The Knicks are 19-21 on the road.
- "(Anthony)'s one of the best in the world. He made a terrific shot. It was well defended. What we take from this game is in the fourth quarter we have to counter what they throw at us. I thought we competed tonight. We just didn’t close it out.” -- Vogel
- “We had the game, let it get away, took some bad shots and just didn’t seem to be playing to win." -- Granger
- "I take full responsibility for this loss. I turned the ball over a couple times when I shouldn’t and just didn’t get the job done." -- Pacers point guard Darren Collison
- "(The last play) was designed for Chauncey (Billups) to come off and me to come and get the ball. But they denied it. I told Chauncey to throw it over the top. The shot was cool but they still had time to come back down and get a shot. I just buckled down and made a great defensive stop out there." -- Anthony
STAT OF THE GAME
Anthony's game-winning bucket tonight was the 16th he has scored in the last 10 seconds of a game in his career. That is the most by any player in the NBA.
The Knicks made the first big move, putting together an 18-4 run late in the second quarter to take a 64-58 lead.
The Pacers buckled down defensively in the third quarter as the Knicks missed 11 shots in a row while Indiana put together an 11-0 run with Collison and Paul George combining for nine of the points, to take a 76-72 advantage.
Indiana put together a 16-5 run bridging the third and fourth periods to open a 98-87 lead early in the fourth but the Knicks scored 10 straight to make it a one-point game. Collison rebounded his own miss to put the Pacers up 109-103 with 3:32 left but that would be Indiana's last score of the game as the Knicks scored the game's last seven points.
The Pacers missed their final six shots and wound up shooting 5-of-21 in the fourth quarter with six turnovers.
BY THE NUMBERS
Granger shot 7-of-21 overall but was 4-of-7 from the arc, adding six rebounds and three assists to his 20 points. Roy Hibbert had his 22nd double-double with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Collison had 16 points, five assists and five rebounds. Tyler Hansbrough and Mike Dunleavy scored 14 apiece. The Pacers shot 44 percent and outrebounded the Knicks 48-42. They also had at least 20 assists for the fourth straight game.
Anthony shot 11-of-28 overall, 6-of-13 from the 3-point line, adding five assists, four rebounds and three blocks to his 34 points. Billups scored 21 with seven assists, scoring 11 from the free-throw line. Toney Douglas scored 14 off the bench and Shawne Williams scored 11. The Knicks shot just 39 percent and were 12-of-38 from the 3-point line but outscored the Pacers 36-26 from the free-throw line.
- Tonight's loss ends the Pacers' home winning streak at a season-long five in a row.
- Each of the last two games in the series have been decided by a shot in the final five seconds.
- Indiana outscored the Knicks, 48-18, in the paint tonight and New York's total matches the fewest points in the paint scored against Indiana this season.
- The Knicks shot 12-38 from 3-pt range tonight and their attempts are the most ever in the NBA by a Pacers' opponent, breaking the record of 35 held by three different teams.
- The Pacers are now 7-5 in games decided by three points or less.
- Tonight, T.J. Ford made his 40th appearance of the season, and his first in 38 games. Scoreless in his four minutes, Ford had one assist, one steal and three boards
- With 13 tonight, the Pacers have had 13 or fewer turnovers in four of the last five games.
- Including their 109 points tonight, the Pacers have averaged 119.7 ppg in the last three games.
The Pacers close out the regular season Wednesday in Orlando against Dwight Howard and the Magic (8 p.m., Fox Sports Indiana, WIBC 93 FM). Tickets: