Golden State (26-32) at Indiana (26-32)

By NOEY KUPCHAN, STATS Writer Monday, Feb 28, 2011 Tipoff: 7:00 pm EST Tue Mar 1, 2011

The Indiana Pacers lost in dramatic fashion their last time out, something they also experienced in January’s matchup with the Golden State Warriors.

Hoping to avoid losing three straight at home for the first time this season, the Pacers will to look avenge their last-second loss versus the Warriors when the teams meet Tuesday night.

Indiana (26-32) suffered a 110-108 overtime defeat versus Phoenix on Sunday - its second loss in a row and fourth in six games since starting 7-1 under interim coach Frank Vogel.

After trailing by 11 at the end of the first quarter and shooting just 34.8 percent in its 95-84 loss Friday night to Utah, the Pacers again fell behind early Sunday but erased a 15-point second-half deficit to send the game into overtime.

However, Suns forward Channing Frye(notes) made a jumper as time expired in the extra period, handing Indiana back-to-back home losses for the first time since Jan. 14-26.

“We trailed, worked ourselves back into it and still didn’t get it done,” said point guard A.J. Price(notes), who scored a season-high 18 points off the bench. “We’ve got to do a better job of getting started in the first quarter and not digging ourselves a hole.”

Last-second losses are nothing new for the Pacers, as Monta Ellis(notes) hit the game-winning shot with less than a second left to give Golden State a 110-108 victory on Jan. 19.

The Warriors (26-32) have taken three of four from Indiana, but they’ve lost three straight at Conseco Fieldhouse, and began their season-high seven-game road trip with a 126-123 defeat at Minnesota on Sunday.

Golden State entered All-Star weekend having won seven of nine but has struggled since the break, shooting just 40.9 percent during a three-game slide.

The Warriors took a 41-32 lead into the second quarter Sunday but were outscored 35-16 in the third, and couldn’t overcome a 15-point deficit over the final 12 minutes.

Golden State’s chances for its first playoff appearance in four seasons may be fading.

“It’s a seven-game road trip that’s going to more or less make or break the rest of our season and this is not the way to start,” said forward David Lee(notes), who recorded 20 points and 10 rebounds for the second consecutive contest.

After averaging 9.7 points over his previous three games, Stephen Curry(notes) matched a season high with five 3-pointers against the Timberwolves and scored 33 points. He also totaled a career-best 11 rebounds.

Ellis, who ranks among the top 10 in the NBA with 24.9 points per game, is averaging just 17.0 on 34.5 percent shooting during his team’s skid.

Ellis, though, could bounce back Tuesday, as he’s averaged 40.5 points in his last two meetings with the Pacers, including a 45-point effort - one short of his career high - Nov. 30, 2009, in a 126-107 win.

Indiana’s Danny Granger(notes), who scored 25 against the Suns, has also experienced success in the series, averaging 23.0 points in his career - his second-highest mark against any opponent. He’s averaged 32.8 in the last six matchups.

The Pacers, clinging to the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference, haven’t lost three straight at home since Feb. 9-25, 2010.

“This is the NBA,” said center Jeff Foster(notes). “We’ve got to bounce back and play better Tuesday against Golden State.”

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Tuesday, Mar 1