Knicks Carmelo Anthony and J.R. Smith celebrate during a fourth-quarter run where they put distance between themselves and the Pacers Tuesday.
NEW YORK -- Carmelo Anthony awoke from his shooting slumber to score 32 points and lead the New York Knicks to a 105-79 win over the Indiana Pacers in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Tuesday at Madison Square Garden.
The series is knotted at 1-1 with Game 3 Saturday in Indiana.
Anthony converted 13 of his 26 shots from the floor, muscling his way to the basket or stepping back to drain his jumper. He was also 4-for-4 from the line, grabbed nine rebounds and had three steals.
Anthony, the NBA’s leading scorer during the regular season, shot just .35.7 percent in Game 1, a 102-95 Indiana victory. In the final two games of the Boston series in the quarterfinals, he made only 15 of his 47 shots.
Paul George led the Pacers with 20 points. Iman Shumpert added 15 points for the Knicks.
Indiana was outscored 33-13 in the fourth quarter, with Anthony contributing 11 points before he was subbed out with 4:00 left.
New York held a 72-66 advantage after three quarters by continuing to attack the rim. Anthony had one of his finest quarters of the post-season. He scored 11 points, nailing 5 of his 9 shots from the floor.
Anthony’s seven straight points offset a Pacer 61-60 lead, their first lead of the game, providing the Knicks with a 67-64 cushion that it never relinquished with 2:09 left in the third.
The Pacers tied the game at 58-58 with 5:22 left in the third on a jump hook from Hibbert, then took their first lead of the night, 61-60, on a 3-pointer from Lance Stephenson one minute later.
Unlike in Game 1 when it was difficult to negotiate Indiana’s bigger front line, the Knicks were able to attack and convert in the lane in the first half. The 6-foot-5 Shumpert was particularly effective, accumulating 11 points to help New York build a 47-42 halftime lead.
With Jason Kidd running the point for the first six minutes of the second quarter, the Knicks displayed crisp ball movement that was lacking in their series-opening loss. New York had 10 assists in the first half. In Game 1, the Knicks totaled just 15.
The Pacers pulled to within five points at 39-34, but an 8-0 Knicks run extended New York’s lead to 47-34 with 3:47 remaining. Kenyon Martin contributed four points in the burst with two layups.
The Pacers were out of sync in their half-court sets for the majority of the first half, turning the ball over 11 times. George scored 15 points, including six in an 8-0 Pacers run to end the half.
The Knicks came out with a tightened defense, forcing seven first-quarter turnovers and picking up three steals. Felton was a catalyst, scoring nine points to help New York to a 29-20 lead.
NOTES: Heading into Game 2 against the Pacers, Anthony was 35 of 110 from the floor in his last four games. … In Indiana’s Game 1 win, David West logged his fourth game in the playoffs shooting 50 percent or higher. … Pacers small forward George ranks in the top 20 in the playoffs in points (18.8), rebounds (8.9) and assists (4.9). … The Knicks expect to have Amar’e Stoudemire, out with a knee injury, back for Game 3 on Saturday.
Grizzlies 99, Thunder 93: Mike Conley hit the go-ahead 3-pointer and had a solid all-around game with 26 points, 10 rebounds and nine assists as visiting Memphis beat Oklahoma City to even the Western Conference semifinal series at 1-1.
Marc Gasol scored 24 points and Zach Randolph added 15 as the Grizzlies outscored the Thunder 30-19 in the fourth quarter. Game 3 is Saturday in Memphis.
Kevin Durant had 36 points, 11 rebounds and nine assists in another big performance for Oklahoma City. Derek Fisher tallied 19 points and went 4-for-5 from 3-point range, but the Thunder were hurt by 21 turnovers.
The Grizzlies took a 92-90 lead when Conley drained a 3-pointer with 1:58 to play and he followed that up by knocking down an 18-footer with 1:04 left and a free throw with 29.4 seconds remaining to make it a five-point game. Randolph hit two free throws and Tony Allen slammed home a dunk to cap a 10-0 run and give Memphis a 99-90 advantage.
Gasol had 17 first-half points as Memphis took a 54-51 lead into the break. Durant scored 13 points in the third quarter as Oklahoma City held the Grizzlies to 15 points and led 74-69 entering the final stanza.
GAME NOTEBOOK: Thunder G Kevin Martin had six points on 2-of-11 shooting after scoring 25 points in consecutive games. ... The Grizzlies collected 16 offensive rebounds and had a 50-30 edge in points in the paint. ... Durant has scored 20 or more points in 34 consecutive playoff games.