The Indiana Pacers rallied for a 93-80 victory over the Washington Wizards Thursday night to win their series in six games and advance to the Eastern Conference Finals.
After scoring 11 points in the first half, David West exploded for 18 in the second half, carrying an offense that wasn’t showing much life. He finished with 29 points, six rebounds and four assists.
Lance Stephenson added 17 points, eight assists and five assists, Paul George scored 12 points and Roy Hibbert and George Hill added 11 apiece.
Marcin Gortat led the Wizards with 19 points and six rebounds while Bradley Beal added 16, Nene scored 15 and John Wall had 12 points, nine assists and five rebounds.
The Wizards took a one-point lead early in the fourth quarter, but the Pacers responded with a 17-2 run that put the game away.
The Pacers got off to a strong start, scoring 29 first quarter points en route to a 52-40 lead at the half. They quickly pushed the lead to 16 after their first two possessions of the second half and looked like they were in complete control of the game before the Wizards began to rally. Down 69-55 with 3:43 to play in the third quarter, the Wizards cut the lead back to eight by the time the fourth quarter began.
The Wizards started the fourth quarter on an 11-2 run, capped by a three-pointer by Beal to give the Wizards a 74-73 lead.
The Pacers will now battle the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals for the second consecutive season. Game 1 from Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana is Sunday afternoon at 3:30 pm EST.