Pacers 98, Bulls 91


INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Jermaine O’Neal had 22 points and 10 rebounds as the Indiana Pacers beat the Chicago Bulls 98-91 on Monday night to snap a four-game losing streak and win for the first time since making an eight-player trade last week.

Darrell Armstrong had 16 points, 10 assists and eight rebounds for the Pacers. The 38-year-old point guard was making his second start of the season in place of the injured Jamaal Tinsley.

Ben Gordon scored 21 of his 31 points in the second half for Chicago. Luol Deng had 18 points and eight rebounds and Kirk Hinrich had 14 points before fouling out late in the game.

Two of the newcomers acquired from Golden State, Mike Dunleavy and Troy Murphy, made solid contributions. Mike Dunleavy had 15 points, seven rebounds and five assists and Troy Murphy had seven points and eight rebounds in his first start for Indiana.

Danny Granger scored 19 points and Marquis Daniels added 12 for the Pacers, who had lost three games during their losing streak by three points or less.

The Pacers led by as many as 20 points in the third quarter, but a jumper by Gordon cut the lead to 83-79 in the fourth.

O’Neal made two shots and two free throws to help Indiana take a 94-85 lead, but Gordon made a 3-pointer and was fouled by O’Neal with 1:14 left. Gordon missed the free throw, but got the rebound before missing an off-balance jumper.

Gordon had one more three-point play to cut Indiana’s lead to 96-91, but that was as close as the Bulls got.

The Pacers went on an 11-0 run late in the first half on their way to a 60-43 halftime lead.

The Pacers led 73-58 when Hinrich was called for fouling Orien Greene with 2:47 left in the third quarter. Hinrich also picked up a technical foul for arguing the call, but Granger missed the technical free throw, and Greene missed both free throws from the original foul call.

Chicago closed the third quarter on a 13-4 run, including 11 points by Gordon. Gordon hit a 29-foot 3-pointer as time expired in the quarter to cut Indiana’s lead to 77-71.

Notes: The Bulls have lost two in a row after winning three straight. … Tinsley had been injury-prone in the recent past, but he started all 40 games for the Pacers this season. … Indiana C Jeff Foster lost his starting job to Murphy.

AP-ES-01-22-07 2204EST