Daily World wire services
NEW YORK — The Knicks didn’t need to go bigger to beat the Pacers. They just needed to play smarter and harder than in Game 1, and it helped that Carmelo Anthony found his shooting touch.
Knowing the danger of falling behind 0-2 with the series moving to Indiana for the next two games, the Knicks played with the effort and energy they lacked Sunday and tied the Eastern Conference semifinals at 1 apiece with a stirring 105-79 victory Tuesday night at the Garden.
Game 3 of the best-of-seven series is Saturday night.
“This was a big game for our ballclub that we had to win,” Mike Woodson said. “We didn’t want to go back to Indiana down two.”
The Knicks broke open a close game with a 36-4 run in a 12-minute span between the third and fourth quarters, turning a two-point deficit into a 98-68 lead with 3:30 left. They locked down defensively and started the fourth by scoring 20 unanswered points.
The Pacers’ first points came on Tyler Hansbrough’s foul shots with 4:48 left and their first fourth-quarter basket was with 3:09 left. Indiana was 4-for-16 and scored 13 points in the fourth. “Just realizing what’s at stake,” Kenyon Martin said. “We didn’t want to go down 0-2. They played a good third quarter, so we had an even greater sense of urgency.”
Anthony finished with a game-high 32 points, including 22 in the second half. He shot 13-for-26 overall, 9-for-15 after halftime. Anthony had been 35-for-110 in his previous four games.
Paul George scored 20 to lead Indiana. David West had 13.
Grizzlies even series
OKLAHOMA CITY — Mike Conley was one assist shy of a triple-double and hit a go-ahead 3-pointer down the stretch to lead the Memphis Grizzlies over the Oklahoma City Thunder, 99-93, in Game 2 of their Western Conference semifinal series.
Conley finished with 26 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists, and the emerging point guard provided the 27th lead change with a clutch 3-pointer with 1:58 remaining. The basket was part of the Grizzlies’ 10-3 run to end the game and helped even the series at a game apiece heading back to Memphis.
Marc Gasol and Zach Randolph powered a one-sided advantage in the post with 24 and 15 points, respectively, as Memphis scored 20 more points in the paint and held a 23-6 edge in second-chance points.
Kevin Durant nearly had a triple-double as well, though in a losing cause, totaling 36 points, 11 boards and nine assists.