INDIANAPOLIS — Guard Monta Ellis made two free throws with 13.7 seconds remaining, breaking a tie, and the Indiana Pacers rallied for a 100-98 victory against the Boston Celtics on Wednesday night in Bankers’ Life Fieldhouse.
Boston had an opportunity to win on its final possession, but guard Avery Bradley missed a 3-pointer, closely guarded by Paul George.READ MORE: Man Indicted In 1-Year-Old's 2019 Drowning At New Hampshire Motel
George, who had 26 points and 10 rebounds, and Jordan Hill, who added 16 points, led a fourth-quarter comeback.
A basket from Jonas Jerebko and a 3-pointer from Thomas gave Boston a 79-78 lead with 8:51 remaining. An Evan Turner 3-pointer at the 7:44 mark pushed the Celtics’ lead to 82-78.
Indiana (2-3) took an 83-82 lead on a Rodney Stuckey 3-pointer at the 7:08 mark, and two George Hill free throws at 6:44 put the Pacers up 85-82.
Guard Isaiah Thomas led Boston (1-3) with 27 points, and Bradley added 21.
A 3-pointer from George with 10:08 remaining in the third quarter pushed the Pacers into a 55-46 lead, but Boston countered with an 8-2 run to pull within 57-54 with 8:39 left in the period.READ MORE: Colin Powell, First Black Secretary Of State, Dies At 84 Of Complications From COVID-19
David Lee’s three-point play with 45.4 seconds left in the quarter cut Indiana’s lead to 73-72 through 36 minutes.
Boston outscored Indiana 29-24 in the third quarter.
Thomas had 14 second-quarter points for Boston, which outscored Indiana 27-26 in the period to close within 49-43 through 24 minutes.
Indiana, which got 15 first-half points from George, shot only 32.1 percent (17 of 53) during the first two quarters, but the Pacers out-rebounded Boston 32-27 in the opening half while forcing 13 turnovers, which Indiana converted into 15 points.
The Pacers also enjoyed a 15-3 advantage in second-chance points through the first 24 minutes.
Despite making only 9 of 25 field goal attempts, Indiana led 23-16 after one quarter, limiting the Celtics to six field goals in 20 attempts (30 percent) while out rebounding Boston, 17-12.
George had eight first quarter points, including six during a 16-6, quarter-closing run. Bradley had 10 during the first period for the Celtics.MORE NEWS: 'Lawrence Deserves Better': Teachers Rally Before Class To Protest Spike In Violence At High School
NOTES: Indiana started C/F Lavoy Allen in place of C Ian Mahinmi, who is battling a sore lower back. … The game was a homecoming for Boston coach Brad Stevens, the former Butler coach who graduated from DePaul University in Greencastle, Ind. … Boston C Tyler Zeller is a former Indiana Mr. Basketball from Washington, Ind. … The Pacers were coming off their first victory, a 94-82 triumph on Tuesday night in Detroit, getting a team-leading 23 points from G Rodney Stuckey. … Indiana started the season 0-3. … The game against Boston is the first of back-to-back home games for the Pacers, who will entertain Miami at 8 p.m. on Friday. … Before facing the Celtics, Indiana PG George Hill ranked third in the NBA with 3-pointers made with 13, trailing only Golden State’s Stephen Curry (21) and Chicago’s Nikola Mirotic (14). … Boston won the 2014-15 series against Indiana 3-1, including 1-1 in Bankers Life Fieldhouse.