Pacers take 2-1 lead over Nets

Friday, April 28, 2006

INDIANAPOLIS -- Jermaine O'Neal tied a career playoff high with 37 points and grabbed 15 rebounds, and the Indiana Pacers beat the New Jersey Nets 107-95 on Thursday night to take a 2-1 lead in their Eastern Conference first-round series.

Anthony Johnson scored 13 of his 25 points in the fourth quarter for the Pacers, who will host Game 4 on Saturday.

Richard Jefferson and Vince Carter each scored 25 points for the Nets, but Carter was held without a field goal in the second half. The Pacers held the Nets to 9-for-38 shooting (24 percent) in the second half.

Foul trouble had limited O'Neal to no more than 32 minutes in each of the first two games.

Bulls 109, Heat 90

CHICAGO -- Shaquille O'Neal had one of his worst playoff games and Chicago took advantage, beating Miami in a game that got heated in the end.

The Bulls pulled within 2-1 in this first-round series.

O'Neal finished with eight points and four rebounds. He had one basket through the first three quarters and scored six meaningless points in the fourth, narrowly missing his career playoff low. O'Neal had seven points against Houston on April 19, 2004.

Miami's James Posey was ejected with 3:15 left after knocking down Kirk Hinrich on a fast break. Six seconds later, Antoine Walker fouled out and got called for a technical foul. So did Udonis Haslem, who served a one-game suspension for throwing his mouthpiece toward an official in the series opener.

Chicago's Ben Gordon had 24 points and Kirk Hinrich finished with 22 points and 11 assists.

-- The Associated Press

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