Pacers Overtake Bulls 91-79
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INDIANAPOLIS (AP) – Luis Scola had 19 points and Lance Stephenson finished with 15 to lead the Indiana Pacers to a 91-79 win over the Chicago Bulls on Friday night.
The Pacers (51-18), who took a 13-game lead on the Bulls (38-31) in the Central Division, went on a 19-0 run in the third quarter.
Carlos Boozer was called for a Flagrant 1 foul with 7:31 left in the third, Roy Hibbert made two free throws and Stephenson made a basket to give the Pacers a 63-45 lead.
DJ Augustin and Jimmy Butler each scored 17 points for the Bulls, who have lost two of their last three games.
The win also gives Indiana a 2-1 series lead over the Bulls. The Pacers will visit Chicago on Monday.
Paul George, who finished with 10 points, 12 rebounds, and 10 assists, also made a basket and dunked, David West scored twice and Stephenson made a basket, a dunk and converted a three-point play to help the Pacers pull away in the big run in the third quarter.
The Bulls went on a 7-0 run early in the fourth quarter, but it wasn’t enough.
Joakim Noah scored a basket, Augustin made two free throws, Butler made another and Mike Dunleavy scored to make it 77-69 with 9:30 remaining.
Scola scored to end the run and give Indiana a 79-69 lead.
Augustin made a layup, but Scola scored again and later made a layup and a free throw to give the Pacers an 84-71 lead with 4:27 remaining.
The team announced about an hour before tipoff that Andrew Bynum was out indefinitely with soreness and swelling in his right knee and said he would “continue to undergo treatment.”
Bynum, who signed with Indiana on Feb. 1 after being suspended in December by the Cleveland Cavaliers, made his debut with Indiana against the Boston Celtics last week and played in just two games.
Scola broke away in the second quarter with 12 points He made back-to-back baskets, Evan Turner scored, and Scola made another jumper in an 8-0 run at the start of the second quarter to give the Pacers a 27-23 lead.
Scola scored to give the Pacers a 42-35 lead with 3:54 left in the first half before the Bulls went on a 6-0 run.
Noah scored a pair of free throws, Taj Gibson scored and Augustin made a layup to make it 42-41 with 1:48 left in the half. George Hill scored for Indiana and Augustin scored to make it 44-43 at halftime.
The Bulls handed Indiana its first loss of the season back on Nov. 16 after the Pacers got off to its best start in franchise history. Derrick Rose and Luol Deng combined for 43 points in that game. This time, the Bulls didn’t have either.
Deng has since been traded and Rose hasn’t played since Nov. 22.
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