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NBA  FINAL            1ST  2ND  3RD  4TH  TOTAL
                      ---  ---  ---  ---  -----
     NEW JERSEY       18   22   21   19    80   
     INDIANA          23   26   19   22    90      FINAL

HIGH SCORERS:   NJN - RODNEY ROGERS 15, LUCIOUS HARRIS 12, TWO
                      PLAYERS WITH 11
                IND - RON ARTEST 24, JERMAINE O'NEAL 20, AL 
                      HARRINGTON 20

HIGH REBOUND:   NJN - JASON COLLINS 13, RODNEY ROGERS 5, BRIAN
                      SCALABRINE 5
                IND - FOUR PLAYERS WITH 7

HIGH ASSISTS:   NJN - JASON COLLINS 4, BRIAN SCALABRINE 4, 
                      THREE PLAYERS WITH 3
                IND - JAMAAL TINSLEY 8, RON ARTEST 5, FRED 
                      JONES 5

         ATT:   18,345

Box Score

NEW JERSEY (80) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp R Jefferson 32 4-8 3-4 0-4 3 2 11 R Rogers 32 6-13 2-2 1-5 2 4 15 J Collins 37 4-6 3-4 3-13 4 4 11 K Kittles 34 4-9 0-0 0-4 3 0 9 L Harris 29 5-12 2-3 1-4 3 1 12 B Scalabrine 30 1-4 4-6 1-5 4 3 6 Z Planinic 19 2-4 1-2 0-1 1 1 6 A Williams 10 2-2 1-1 0-1 2 4 5 B Armstrong 15 2-5 0-0 0-3 0 0 5 T Slay 2 0-0 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 J Kidd DNP - BONE BRUISE LEFT KNEE K Martin DNP - TENDINITIS LEFT KNEE _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 30-63 16-22 6-40 22 19 80 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.476, FT-.727. 3-Point Goals: 4-14, .286 (R Jefferson 0-1, R Rogers 1-4, K Kittles 1-4, L Harris 0-1, Z Planinic 1-1, B Armstrong 1-3). Team Rebounds: 7. Blocked Shots:2 (J Collins, B Scalabrine). Turnovers:18 (R Jefferson 7, A Williams 3, R Rogers 2, K Kittles 2, Z Planinic 2, J Collins, B Scalabrine). Steals: 3 (A Williams, B Scalabrine, Z Planinic). INDIANA (90) fg ft rb min m-a m-a o-t a pf tp R Artest 36 8-17 7-7 1-7 5 3 24 J O'Neal 34 7-15 6-6 2-7 3 4 20 J Foster 31 2-5 2-2 2-7 1 4 6 R Miller 28 3-9 0-0 0-0 0 0 7 J Tinsley 27 1-5 0-0 0-3 8 3 3 A Harrington 31 8-12 3-4 2-7 2 3 20 A Johnson 21 1-5 0-0 2-3 0 2 3 F Jones 18 1-4 1-1 0-0 5 1 4 A Croshere 10 1-3 0-0 0-0 0 0 3 J Bender 4 0-1 0-0 0-0 0 1 0 K Anderson DNP - COACH'S DECISION S Pollard DNP - COACH'S DECISION _____________________________________________________ TOTALS 240 32-76 19-20 9-34 24 21 90 _____________________________________________________ Percentages: FG-.421, FT-.950. 3-Point Goals: 7-16, .438 (R Artest 1-2, R Miller 1-4, J Tinsley 1-3, A Harrington 1-1, A Johnson 1-2, F Jones 1-2, A Croshere 1-2). Team Rebounds: 3. Blocked Shots:2 (J O'Neal, R Artest). Turnovers:5 (J O'Neal 3, A Harrington, R Artest). Steals: 12 (R Artest 4, F Jones 3, R Miller 2, J O'Neal, J Tinsley, A Johnson). ------------------------------------------- NEW JERSEY 18 22 21 19 - 80 INDIANA 23 26 19 22 - 90 ------------------------------------------- Technical fouls: Indiana - 1 (Defensive Three, 6:33 3rd). Flagrant fouls: New Jersey 1 (R Rogers, 6:24 1st). A: 18,345. T: 2:22. Officials: Bennett Salvatore, Blane Reichelt, Derek Richardson.


Extended Box

NEW JERSEY (80) AT INDIANA (90) NEW JERSEY REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === R JEFFERSON F 32 4-8 3-4 0 4 4 3 2 0 7 11 R ROGERS F 32 6-13 2-2 1 4 5 2 4 0 2 15 J COLLINS C 37 4-6 3-4 3 10 13 4 4 0 1 11 K KITTLES G 34 4-9 0-0 0 4 4 3 0 0 2 9 L HARRIS G 29 5-12 2-3 1 3 4 3 1 0 0 12 B SCALABRINE 30 1-4 4-6 1 4 5 4 3 1 1 6 Z PLANINIC 19 2-4 1-2 0 1 1 1 1 1 2 6 A WILLIAMS 10 2-2 1-1 0 1 1 2 4 1 3 5 B ARMSTRONG 15 2-5 0-0 0 3 3 0 0 0 0 5 T SLAY 2 0-0 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 J KIDD DNP - BONE BRUISE LEFT KNEE K MARTIN DNP - TENDINITIS LEFT KNEE TOTALS 240 30-63 16-22 6 34 40 22 19 3 18 80 (.476) (.727) TEAM REBS: 7 TOTAL TO: 19 (25 PTS) INDIANA REBOUNDS PLAYER POS MIN FGM-FGA FTM-FTA OFF-DEF-TOT AST PF ST TO PTS ====== === === ======= ======= =========== === == == == === R ARTEST F 36 8-17 7-7 1 6 7 5 3 4 1 24 J O'NEAL F 34 7-15 6-6 2 5 7 3 4 1 3 20 J FOSTER C 31 2-5 2-2 2 5 7 1 4 0 0 6 R MILLER G 28 3-9 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 7 J TINSLEY G 27 1-5 0-0 0 3 3 8 3 1 0 3 A HARRINGTON 31 8-12 3-4 2 5 7 2 3 0 1 20 A JOHNSON 21 1-5 0-0 2 1 3 0 2 1 0 3 F JONES 18 1-4 1-1 0 0 0 5 1 3 0 4 A CROSHERE 10 1-3 0-0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 J BENDER 4 0-1 0-0 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 0 K ANDERSON DNP - COACH'S DECISION S POLLARD DNP - COACH'S DECISION TOTALS 240 32-76 19-20 9 25 34 24 21 12 5 90 (.421) (.950) TEAM REBS: 3 TOTAL TO: 7 (4 PTS) NEW JERSEY 18 22 21 19 - 80 INDIANA 23 26 19 22 - 90 BLOCKED SHOTS: NEW JERSEY - J COLLINS, B SCALABRINE. INDIANA - J O'NEAL, R ARTEST. 3-PT. FIELD GOALS: NEW JERSEY 4-14 (.286), R JEFFERSON 0-1, R ROGERS 1- 4, K KITTLES 1-4, L HARRIS 0-1, Z PLANINIC 1-1, B ARMSTRONG 1-3. INDIANA 7- 16 (.438), R ARTEST 1-2, R MILLER 1-4, J TINSLEY 1-3, A HARRINGTON 1- 1, A JOHNSON 1-2, F JONES 1-2, A CROSHERE 1-2. TECHNICAL FOULS: INDIANA - DEFENSIVE THREE. FLAGRANT FOULS: NEW JERSEY 1 (R ROGERS, 6:24 1ST). OFFICIALS: BENNETT SALVATORE, BLANE REICHELT, DEREK RICHARDSON. A - 18,345. T - 2:22.


Game Story

INDIANAPOLIS (Ticker) -- The Indiana Pacers gave the Eastern Conference has at least one thing on the Western Conference. Jermaine O'Neal came alive in the second half and Ron Artest had a big game as the Pacers clinched the NBA's best record with a 90-80 victory over the shorthanded New Jersey Nets. Having already wrapped up the Central Division and top seed in what clearly is the weaker conference in the East, the Pacers (59-21) secured home-court advantage throughout the entire playoffs by winning for the ninth time in 11 games. "The 59 wins are OK, but we still have some winning to do," O'Neal said. "We need to get out of the first round of the playoffs." O'Neal picked up three fouls and went scoreless in the first half before he flashed his All-Star form after intermission, scoring 20 points on 7-of-13 shooting. He also did not have to deal with Nets All-Star forward Kenyon Martin, who sat out to rest a sore knee. "They can hold Jermaine for a while, but they can't do it for the whole game," Pacers forward Al Harrington said. "He came out, put his head into it, and got the job done in the second half." While O'Neal was the star in the second half, Artest carried the load in the first half, scoring 17 of his 24 points and helping the Pacers build a 49-40 lead. Harrington also scored 20 points for the Pacers, who established their franchise record for wins in the NBA. Indiana also won 59 games in 1969-70, when they won the first of three ABA titles. "We're very proud of what this team has accomplished to this point," Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said. "To have a chance to break the ABA record would be a milestone. Those ABA teams of the late 60's and early 70's were great teams, some of the best in basketball." The two-time defending conference champion Nets also played without superstar point guard Jason Kidd, who rested a sore knee. He returned earlier this week after missing nine games. "Being shorthanded is no excuse, you have to play with who you've got," said Nets forward Rodney Rogers, who started in place of Martin. "We didn't make the plays when we needed to. They're a good defensive team and we didn't execute like we needed to." Despite being shorthanded, the Nets used a 14-4 run to start the third quarter, capped by Richard Jefferson's fadeaway jumper, to take a 54-53 lead. Harrington's foul shot with 4:26 left in the quarter gave the Pacers the lead for good, 58-57. O'Neal scored eight points in a 10-4 run to end the period. After the Nets pulled within 71-68 with 9:40 remaining, the Pacers used a 10-0 surge to put the game out of reach. O'Neal had six points in the burst. "They are a great team. They've matured and they've just kept getting better," said Jefferson, who managed just eight points and committed seven turnovers while being defended by Artest. "They are possibly the deepest team in the league."


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