Friday night game round-up: Indiana Pacers and Miami Heat force game sevens

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RAPTORS (2) 83, PACERS (7) 101

The Toronto Raptors' search for a first playoff series win since 2001 continues after they were blown out in game six at the Bankers Life Fieldhouse by the Indiana Pacers. 

Toronto were up by four at the half as the Pacers shot a miserly 33 percent from the field, however, a huge third quarter swing changed the outlook of the game as Indiana outscored their opponents 31-20 and shot 67 percent.

Paul George scored a game-high 21 points for the home team, shooting at a field goal percentage of 35.7 and picking up ten points from the charity stripe - he also had 11 boards and six assists. Rookie Myles Turner pulled down nine rebounds to go with his 15 points. All of Indiana's starters hit double figures. 

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It turned into a tough night for the Raptors in the second half as they could not buy a basket. DeMar DeRozan scored just eight points all game while Kyle Lowry had ten and as many assists. Corey Joseph and DeMarre Caroll had a team-high 15 points apiece. 

The series now returns to the Air Canada Centre with a deciding game taking place on Monday. The smart money would be on Toronto to wrap it up, however, with the pressure weighing down on them, Indiana will fancy their chances of advancing. 

HEAT (3) 97, HORNETS (6) 90

After losing three successive games, the Miami Heat won on the road to keep themselves alive and swing the series with the Charlotte Hornets back in their favour. 

After the contentious end to game five, Dwyane Wade was out for revenge and he played a huge role in forcing a game seven back at the American Airlines Arena. He hit a three, followed by an incredibly tough jumper before stuffing Kemba Walker at the other end. 

Wade dropped 23 points including two threes - his first buckets from deep since December. Brit Luol Deng continued his strong playoff form with 21 points off 64.3 percent from the field. Hassan Whiteside had seven rebounds, four blocks and 13 points before he fouled out.

Kemba Walker shot 50 percent from downtown for his game-high 37 points. He also had five assists. Al Jefferson had nine rebounds and 18 points while Cody Zeller was the only other Hornet to hit double figures as he ended the night with 12.

Heading back to Florida, the series has swung in Miami's favour. Having ended their losing streak with a confident win, the Heat will be favourites to advance to the next round. But don't count out the Hornets, they are far from done.


After the injuries to Chris Paul and Blake Griffin, it seemed to be a case of when, not if the Clippers would be eliminated from the playoffs. Despite battling valiantly in Portland, the Trail Blazers held on to set up a series with the Golden State Warriors. 

Sixth Man of the Year Jamal Crawford was the inspiration behind a battling performance but missed a layup to tie the game with just over a second remaining. Austin Rivers' halfcourt shot was also no good at the buzzer.

The Blazers dropped ten threes in the second half alone. C.J. McCollum and Damian Lillard combined for a total of 48 points and contributed six buckets from downtown on the night. Maurice Harkless had 14 points while Al-Farouq Aminu had ten.

Crawford picked up 12 points from the free-throw line as he ended the game with 32. Austin Rivers, who left the floor early to receive 11 stitches after an elbow from Aminu, dropped 21 points despite a swollen left eye. DeAndre Jordan and J.J. Redick both had 15 points. 

It was a big effort from a shorthanded Clippers roster but ultimately injuries robbed them of the chance to rekindle their rivalry with the Warriors. Portland's backcourt duo now have the chance to spring a surprise against the Curry-less defending champions.

Charlotte Hornets
Southeast Division
Eastern Conference
Western Conference
Central Division
NBA Playoffs
Toronto Raptors
Atlantic Division
Miami Heat
L.A. Clippers
Pacific Division
Northwest Division
Indiana Pacers
Portland Trail Blazers

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