Pacers pummel Knicks

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INDIANAPOLIS – Stephen Jackson scored 28 points and Peja Stojakovic added 23 to help the Indiana Pacers beat the New York Knicks 101-82 and improve their chances of making the playoffs.

Austin Croshere added 17 points and 11 rebounds as the Pacers (37-40) moved into a tie for the sixth position in the Eastern Conference. Indiana stopped New York’s winning streak at three games.

Jamal Crawford led the Knicks with 26 points and seven assists, but no other Knicks player scored more than 12 points.

Indiana had lost eight of 10 and lost 98-73 at Detroit on Sunday, but the Pacers outrebounded the Knicks 40-31 and held them to 38 percent shooting in the second half.

Indiana’s perimeter shooters allowed the Pacers to overcome an off night from Jermaine O’Neal. The team’s leading scorer, O’Neal didn’t make a basket until the fourth quarter and was held to 10 points after scoring 25 against the Knicks last Friday.

New York’s Channing Frye, Jalen Rose, Quentin Richardson and Stephon Marbury all missed the game with injuries.

Crawford’s fallaway jumper with a half-second remaining gave New York a 98-96 win over Indiana last Friday. Crawford never got the chance on Monday after the Pacers took control for good in the third quarter.

Indiana led 48-46 at halftime, but New York took a quick 57-52 lead after three Crawford baskets. The Pacers closed the quarter on an 11-0 run to take a 72-62 lead into the final period.

Notes: Indiana point guard Jamaal Tinsley played after missing three games with a sore right Achilles’ tendon. He finished with six points and seven assists. … A double technical was called on Indiana’s Jackson and New York’s Nate Robinson early in the second quarter after the two exchanged words. … Stojakovic lost ground in his attempt to catch Phoenix guard Steve Nash for the league lead in free throw percentage. He made 1-for-2 and now is shooting 91.3 percent for the season. Nash, who didn’t play on Monday, is shooting 92.4 percent.

AP-ES-04-10-06 2144EDT

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