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Pacers beat Knicks, clinch seventh place

INDIANAPOLIS — It took them a while to get things rolling, but the Indiana Pacers got a 102-90 win over the New York Knicks in the final home game of the season Tuesday night at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

The Knicks went on a 17-7 run in the first quarter to put the Pacers’ hopes of avoiding the Cleveland Cavaliers in the first round of the NBA playoffs.

After trailing at halftime, the Pacers went on a 13-0 run in the third quarter for a nine-point lead heading into the final quarter.

The Detroit Pistons lost 99-93 to the Miami Heat on Tuesday, which helped the Pacers secure the No. 7 seed in the Eastern Conference for the playoffs.

The Pacers will face the No. 2 seed Toronto Raptors, while the Pistons will be the No. 8 seed and square off with the Cavaliers.

The playoff schedule will be announced later this week.

Paul George and George Hill scored 19 apiece to lead the Pacers Tuesday.

Ty Lawson scored nine points and had eight assists, picking up momentum moving toward the playoffs. He said he has been settling in to his new role with the team earlier this week and that he is ready to step up in the playoffs.

Lawson could be key for the Pacers, a team that seems to do better when pushing the tempo of the game. His fast-paced style adds another dimension to the Pacers’ bench.

Indiana’s bench outscored New York’s 38-32 behind 13 points from Myles Turner and 10 from Rodney Stuckey.

Derrick Williams led the Knicks with 21 points and Jerian Grant added 18.

The Pistons’ loss makes the Pacers’ game in Milwaukee on Wednesday virtually meaningless. It is likely that Paul George will sit out Wednesday’s game in Milwaukee to get a little extra rest heading into the playoffs.

Tip-off is set for 8 p.m. Wednesday. The Pacers are 2-1 against the Bucks this season, with the only loss coming at home on new Year’s Eve.

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