Miller scored 27 of his season-high 36 points in the second
half, leading the Pacers to a 95-87 victory over the Portland Trail
Blazers on Wednesday night.
The 39-year-old Miller score more than 30 points for the third
time this season and had his highest scoring game since pouring in
41 against Milwaukee in November 2000.
"Things started to flow for me in the second half," Miller
said. "They set good screens, and the rest was up to me to make
the shots. We need the win more than anything. It's good to get out
there and get a few looks and run some of the old plays and just
Miller's timely scoring had fans at Conseco Fieldhouse chanting
"This city has really backed myself and my family," Miller
said of the crowd support. "We've had a great relationship."
Miller's offense was especially important for Indiana as
All-Star Jermaine O'Neal struggled to score for a third straight
game. O'Neal, who went scoreless in the first half, finished with
10 points on 4-of-19 shooting.
"We just rode him because he's capable of piling up those kinds
of points in those kinds of stretches," Pacers coach Rick Carlisle
said. "We were struggling to score all night long, and he really
lifted us up."
"Reggie was feeling it tonight," said Portland's Nick Van
Excel, who finished with 16 points and four assists. "Jermaine
struggled and they needed a lift from somebody. He pulled them
After scoring nine points in the first half, Miller had 15
points in the third quarter, including 10 straight points during a
14-6 run, which gave Indiana a 57-48 lead midway through the
The Trail Blazers used an eight-point run at the start of the
fourth quarter to close within 71-70. But Miller scored four
consecutive points to push the lead back to five with 4:31 left. He
also hit eight free throws in the final 40 seconds to seal the
"Obviously tonight, the difference was Reggie Miller,"
Portland coach Maurice Cheeks said. "Doing things only Reggie can
do, he really got their offense started."
Joel Przybilla had another big night for Portland, finishing
with 18 points and 17 rebounds. He is averaging 17 points and 15
rebounds over his last three games.
Both teams shot poorly to start the game. The Pacers were
7-of-25 in the first quarter, and Portland shot 7-of-18.
Despite shooting 28 percent, Indiana managed to take a 19-18
lead after four straight points from Jones to close out the opening
The two teams battled back-and-forth in the second quarter, with
eight lead changes and three ties, before Indiana grabbed a 43-40
lead at the break.
O'Neal picked up his 1,000th career blocked shot in the
first quarter. ... After hitting his first two free throws, Damon
Stoudamire missed his third attempt, snapping a Portland record of
57 straight makes. ... Trail Blazers forward Zach Randolph missed
his second straight game with a sore right knee. ... Patterson and
Foster had to be restrained by teammates in the fourth quarter
after Patterson took a hard foul from Foster. Patterson got a
technical foul for throwing the ball at Foster. ... Indiana won for
the third time in its last four games heading into the All-Star