- Sports & Recreation
- Paul George
- Carmelo Anthony
- George Hill
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By Everett Merrill, The Sports Xchange November 20, 2013 11:40 PM
Carmelo Anthony for most of the night, Pacers forward Paul George somehow summoned the energy to take control in overtime, leading Indiana to a 103-96 comeback win Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden.NEW YORK -- After guarding Knicks forward
George led the Pacers (10-1) with 35 points, including nine in OT, as Indiana became the NBA's first 10-game winner this season. Anthony deposited 30 points and hauled in 18 rebounds for his fifth double-double. He has topped the Knicks (3-8) in scoring in all 11 games this season. "To carry the offensive load the way he (George) did and have to guard Anthony for basically 48 minutes, I don't know where he finds the energy," Pacers coach Frank Vogel said. "Even though he is sort of becoming our go-to guy, he's still relatively new in crunch time moments for us. But he's earned it. He's got big guts." Forward David West said, "(George) wants to be great. He wants to be an elite player in this league, and he has a chance to with this group." Point guard George Hill contributed 23 points for the Pacers and West tossed in 10 points and grabbed 10 rebounds. J.R. Smith came off the Knicks' bench to score a season-high 21. The loss was the sixth straight at home for the Knicks, who haven't won at the Garden since opening night, Oct. 30 against Milwaukee. The meeting between the two teams was the first since the Pacers eliminated the Knicks in last year's Eastern Conference semifinals. George nailed a 3-pointer, a jumper and two free throws to give Indiana a 96-91 lead with 1:30 to go in overtime. New York forward Kenyon Martin committed a foul on the last free throw, and Indiana center Roy Hibbert sank one for a 97-91 cushion. "I have to be aggressive," George said. "It was not about me looking for shots. I just wanted to create and get the best shot for us." George was fouled by guard Iman Shumpert beyond the arc with 5.2 seconds left in regulation and sank all three free throws to tie it at 89-89, sending the game into overtime. "I told Iman that I'm sure that they are going to give him (George) the ball on the hand back," Knicks coach Mike Woodson said. "But he (Shumpert) kind of lazily played it. The worst that can happen is that he hits a three over you and it goes into overtime like it did, but you can't foul him." Indiana grabbed a 79-75 lead with 5:10 to play, going on a 10-0 spurt. Point guard Beno Udrih's leaner with 1:25 left gave the Knicks an 87-86 lead in regulation. Anthony was fouled grabbing his 17th rebound and promptly sank both free throws to move the Knicks' lead to 89-86. Anthony picked up his fourth foul with the Knicks leading 50-48 and 5:15 to go in the third quarter. New York increased its lead to 62-58 at the close of the quarter. The Pacers tied the game at 47-47 on a traditional three-point play by Lance Stephenson, then took their first lead (48-47) of the night on a free throw from West with 7:08 left in the third quarter. Anthony shot 50 percent (7-14) in the first half to help the Knicks to a 42-37 lead. A revamped starting lineup with Udrih in the backcourt provided the Knicks with a quick 13-0 edge with 7:10 left in the opening period en route to a 19-14 lead after the first quarter. Andrea Bargnani led the way with five points, as six Knicks recorded points in the quarter. "We're going to continue to fight regardless of where the game is," West said. "Our defense is going to keep us in most games." NOTES: The Knicks were without G Raymond Felton (lower back/left hip). ... PG Beno Udrih made his second straight start for the Knicks. ... New York assigned G Chris Smith to the Erie Bayhawks of the NBA's Development League. Smith had not appeared in a game this season since signing as a free agent out of Louisville in September. ... Indiana F David West has reached double figures in scoring in all six games, recording three double-doubles against the Knicks in last year's Eastern Conference semifinals. ... Pacers C Roy Hibbert leads the NBA with 46 blocked shots. Indiana's 89 blocks are tops in the league. ... Indiana entered the game with the league's stingiest defense, allowing just 86.3 points per game. ... Paul George became the fourth player to score at least 30 points against the Knicks at Madison Square Garden this season. The forward joins Kevin Love (34) and Kevin Martin (30) of Minnesota and Houston's James Harden (36).