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Pacers turn in another strong first half

There was a theory that the Indiana Pacers' strong showing in Game 1 would serve as a wake-up call for the Chicago Bulls, who would look more like a title contender in Game 2.

But the first half Monday unfolded much like Game 1 did in that Indiana led most of the way and led 47-44 at the half.

The Bulls committed 10 turnovers and shot just 36 percent from the field in the first half, but once again, Indiana couldn't pull away.

Derrick Rose rallied his team in the second quarter with nine of his 13 first-half points, but for the most part, the United Center crowd was relatively quiet as it awaited the team with the best regular-season record in the NBA to play up to its reputation.

The Pacers suffered a blow when Darren Collison, who scored eight points in the first half, exited the game late in the second quarter with an ankle injury. He tested the ankle at halftime but was ruled out for the rest of the game.

One of the bigger ovations in the first half was for Chicago Bears coach Lovie Smith, a season ticket holder who must have been wondering where the home team's execution was in the first half.