Atlanta wins on road for 3-2 series lead over top-seeded Indiana
The Atlanta Hawks won at top-seeded Indiana to take a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round series.
The Associated Press
INDIANAPOLIS – Mike Scott made five three-pointers during a 30-6 second-quarter run Monday night, and the Atlanta Hawks fended off a furious fourth-quarter rally to beat top-seeded Indiana 107-97 and take a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round series.
Atlanta can end the series by winning at home Thursday.
Scott scored all 17 of his points during an incredible 12-minute stretch when Atlanta went 13 of 16 from the field and outscored Indiana 41-19 to take a 61-40 halftime lead. The Hawks and the 1970 Milwaukee Bucks are the only road teams in the shot-clock era to score at least 40 points and allow fewer than 20 in any quarter of a playoff game.
Shelvin Mack led the eighth-seeded Hawks with 20 points.
Paul George scored 26 for Indiana, which was listed as a seven-point favorite and got as close as eight in the final minute.
Atlanta was 9 of 11 from beyond the three-point arc in the second quarter. The Hawks shot 81.3 percent from the field during a second quarter in which the Pacers allowed their most points in a playoff game.
“It was frustrating because we didn’t make a change,” George said of the Pacers’ defense. “We let them run the same action, the same shot. We didn’t do nothing. So that was frustrating.”
Heat sweeps Charlotte
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – LeBron James heard the cheers from the crowd as he was writhing in pain on the court while holding his right thigh.
The reaction seemed to awaken the four-time league most valuable player.
James scored 19 of his game-high 31 points after suffering a thigh bruise early in the third quarter, helping the Miami Heat earn a first-round sweep of the Charlotte Bobcats with a 109-98 victory.
James was 10 of 19 from the field and had nine assists in Game 4.
“It’s definitely sore,” James said of his leg. “I’m fortunate we were able to close out tonight and I can give it a little rest.”
The two-time defending NBA champions will await the winner of the Brooklyn-Toronto series, which is tied 2-2.
Chris Bosh added 17 points and Dwyane Wade battled through foul trouble and finished with 15 as Miami extended its winning streak over Charlotte to 20 games.
The Bobcats played without Al Jefferson, their leading scorer and rebounder who had been bothered by a foot injury since the first quarter of Game 1. Guard Kemba Walker picked up the slack, scoring 29 points.
Spurs square series
DALLAS – Manu Ginobili scored 23 points, Boris Diaw made a go-ahead three-pointer in the final minute and the San Antonio Spurs held off a second-half surge by Dallas to beat the Mavericks 93-89, evening their first-round West series at 2-2.
The Spurs led by 20 points in the third quarter before the Mavericks pulled even midway through the fourth quarter of Game 4. The score was still tied when Diaw connected from long range over Dirk Nowitzki at the top of the key for a 90-87 lead.
Monta Ellis led Dallas with 20 points but missed two potential tying shots after Diaw’s basket.
San Antonio coach Gregg Popovich challenged his team to play with more “nastiness” after falling behind in the series with two straight losses.