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Pacers 101, Bobcats 77

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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - Paul George knew he needed to have a good game after the way he played Monday night.

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George posted his first career triple-double with 23 points, 12 rebounds and a career-high 12 assists, and the Indiana Pacers snapped a two-game losing streak with a 101-77 rout of the Charlotte Bobcats on Wednesday night.

The All-Star forward bounced back after being limited to five points on 1-of-10 shooting in an 89-84 loss to the Brooklyn Nets two nights earlier.

``It came in the course of me trying to do whatever I could, not only to win the game but to try to extend the lead,'' George said. ``I knew I needed a big game. I didn't play well at all (on Monday night) and didn't help, I thought, to win that game.

``I wasn't having intentions of coming out and having a triple-double, but I knew I had to be more aggressive this game.''

Tyler Hansbrough tied a season high with 19 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for the Pacers starting in place of David West, who was sidelined by an eye injury.

``I feel like I can get a better rhythm coming straight from warm-ups,'' Hansbrough said. ``Also I think a little more focus. I'm not going in and trying to force things. Just relaxed and letting things come to me. I think relaxing and letting the game come to me is a big deal.''

Pacers coach Frank Vogel was pleased with Hansbrough in his first start of the season.

``Tyler Hansbrough is a starting power forward in this league,'' Vogel said. ``He proves every chance he gets what he can do.''

Byron Mullens led the Bobcats with 19 points and Gerald Henderson chipped in 14.

The first quarter started as a shootout with Indiana and Charlotte combining for 59 points on 55.6 percent shooting. The Pacers held a 30-29 lead after the first before limiting the Bobcats to 23 percent shooting (14-for-61) over the final three quarters.

``We had no running game,'' Henderson said. ``We didn't defend the ball that well, they got it into the paint a lot on us, their bigs are tough even though they didn't have David West tonight they're still a very physical team.

``We feel like we are at our best when we get out in transition. We think we're improving in the half-court game. Tonight our shots just didn't fall for us.''

George opened the game with a corner 3-pointer and finished the opening quarter with 11 points.

The Pacers stepped up on the defensive end in the second quarter, holding Charlotte without a field goal for nearly three minutes and to only 17 points in the quarter on 5-of-20 shooting. But Indiana's offense didn't fare any better with 19 points in the second.

Indiana closed the first half on a 9-2 run and started the third with an 12-6 stretch that included a tip-in from Roy Hibbert, a transition jumper from George Hill and a two-hand dunk by Hansbrough off a pass from Hill.

Orlando Johnson gave the Pacers their biggest lead of the game - 70-60 - on a free throw with eight seconds left in the third quarter. The Pacers ran away in the fourth quarter with little resistance from the Bobcats, who were outscored 52-31 after halftime.

``You have a tale of two games ... in in the second half we had to keep our focus,'' Bobcats coach Mike Dunlap said. ``It isn't like we had to make major adjustments. So there were 50/50 balls, taking charges, and being attentive and alert.

``So for me it was very disappointing being on that side of it.''

Notes: The Pacers were only 6-for-19 from 3-point range, but Hill was a perfect 3-for-3. ... Bismack Biyombo had 16 rebounds and four blocks for the Bobcats.

AP NEWS
The Associated Press News Service

Copyright 2015
The Associated Press
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