Regular Season Series (Game 1 of 4)

Series starts 2/22

Game 1: Friday, February 22nd
Game 2: Saturday, February 23rd
Game 3: Wednesday, March 26th
Game 4: Friday, March 28th

Nets 103

(24-31, 11-16 away)

Pacers 113

(22-33, 11-16 home)

    Coverage: FSMW

    7:00 PM ET, February 22, 2008

    Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN

    1 2 3 4 T
    NJ 27 22 23 31103
    IND 28 22 35 28113

    Top Performers

    New Jersey: R. Jefferson 34 Pts, 3 Reb, 2 Ast, 2 Stl

    Indiana: M. Dunleavy 34 Pts, 1 Reb, 1 Ast, 3 Stl

    Dunleavy leads Pacers past Jefferson, Nets

    INDIANAPOLIS (AP) -- The New Jersey Nets clearly missed Jason Kidd in their loss to the Indiana Pacers.

    Mike Dunleavy scored 34 points, and the Pacers took advantage of 23 turnovers by New Jersey in a 113-103 win Friday night.

    Kidd, the All-Star point guard, was sent to Dallas in a trade earlier in the week. Indiana could tell the difference in the Nets, who finished with just seven fast-break points and had more turnovers than assists.

    "I think it's a little easier to defend them because he brought so much to their transition game," Pacers forward Danny Granger said. "They just didn't have that tonight. They won't have that anymore. I'd rather play them without him than with him any day."

    Kidd's expected replacement, Devin Harris, is out with a sprained left ankle. Marcus Williams, the temporary starter who scored 25 points against Chicago on Wednesday, was held to five points on Friday.

    Harris is one of four new players the Nets picked up in the trade with Dallas.

    "It's not easy to implement all these guys," New Jersey forward Bostjan Nachbar said. "It's similar to training camp. It's going to take some time."

    Richard Jefferson scored 34 points, Nachbar scored 22 and Vince Carter had 15 points and eight assists for the Nets.

    The newcomers from Dallas contributed, but not enough. Trenton Hassell scored 11 points, Maurice Ager scored two and DeSagana Diop went scoreless in 12 minutes.

    Dunleavy helped the Pacers snap a three-game losing streak. He made 11 of 20 shots, including 4 of 6 3-pointers after shooting 34 percent in Indiana's previous five games.

    "Mike had a great game," Pacers coach Jim O'Brien said. "I thought he really stroked the ball well. I knew he wouldn't be down long."

    Indiana point guard Travis Diener tied a career high with 19 points, set a career high with eight rebounds, and had six assists. Dunleavy liked Diener's rebounding numbers.

    "Sometimes those rebounds come right to you when you're a little guy," he joked. "He's done a nice job running our team. He makes the right plays."

    Granger scored 16 points and Jeff Foster added 10 points and 14 rebounds for the Pacers, who will play at New Jersey on Saturday in the second of four meetings this season.

    It was Indiana's first double-digit win since beating Atlanta on Jan. 4. New Jersey entered the game seventh in the Eastern Conference, with the Pacers three games behind.

    Nachbar made the second of two free throws to cut Indiana's lead to 101-92 with just under five minutes to play, but Dunleavy made a 3-pointer at the other end to push the Pacers' lead to 12. Indiana led by at least nine points the rest of the way.

    The Pacers often have seen late leads evaporate this season, and Dunleavy was glad it didn't happen again.

    "We just stayed aggressive," he said. "We didn't worry about being up or taking the right shot. We just made plays."

    The Pacers struggled early, going more than eight minutes without a field goal in a stretch that lasted from late in the first quarter to just past the middle of the second quarter. New Jersey went on a 15-2 run during that span to take a 37-30 lead.

    Indiana rallied, and a tip-in by Marquis Daniels with 1.3 seconds left in the second quarter gave the Pacers a 50-49 halftime lead.

    The Pacers shot 48 percent in the second half to pull away.

    "I thought we played pretty well defensively until there were about three minutes left in the second quarter, and then we just stopped," Nachbar said. "We never recovered from that."

    Game notes

    Granger's franchise-record streak for consecutive free throws made ended at 65 with a miss in the third quarter. He broke Reggie Miller's mark of 61 on Wednesday. ... Indiana F Jermaine O'Neal and G Jamaal Tinsley sat out with left knee injuries. ... New Jersey coach Lawrence Frank was assessed a technical foul in the fourth quarter for arguing a charging foul against Ager. ... Diener has 63 assists and 12 turnovers this season.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press


    Team Stat Comparison

    Points 103 113
    FGM-FGA 38-78 (.487) 39-87 (.448)
    3PM-3PA 10-22 (.455) 12-28 (.429)
    FTM-FTA 17-27 (.630) 23-29 (.793)
    Rebounds (Offensive-Total) 16-26 6-22
    Assists 22 21
    Turnovers 23 15
    Steals 10 8
    Blocks 5 2
    Fast Break Points 7 11
    Fouls (Tech/Flagrant) 26 (1/0) 20 (1/0)
    Largest Lead 10 17

    Top Performers

    New Jersey
    Richard Jefferson Jefferson
    Points: 34
    Reb: 3
    Ast: 2
    Stl: 2
    Blk: 0
    Mike Dunleavy Dunleavy
    Points: 34
    Reb: 1
    Ast: 1
    Stl: 3
    Blk: 0