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Raptors blow huge lead against Pacers

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INDIANAPOLIS—Jordan Hill and Monta Ellis helped Indiana pull off a big come-from-behind win with hopes of getting the Pacers back to their winning ways.

Hill had season highs of 20 points and 13 rebounds, while Ellis added 18 points, as the Pacers beat the Raptors 106-90 last night to snap Toronto’s four-game winning streak.

“We have our ups-and-downs sometimes,” Hill noted.

“We’ve got to shake them off and continue to play.”

That’s exactly what Indiana did—even when it looked as if the Raptors were going to run away with another win.

Indiana used a 39-4 run in the first half to climb out of a 21-point deficit and Lavoy Allen made two free throws to give the Pacers a 29-28 lead at the 11:38 mark in the second quarter.

Indiana then took a 44-30 lead when Ellis converted a three-point play with 4:08 left in the first half.

“He’s a mid-range assassin,” said C.J. Miles.

“He’s made big shots his whole career and he’s been stepping up the last few games for us.”

Miles added 17 points for the Pacers, who now have won two of three games and also snapped a five-game skid against Toronto, including a 106-99 loss in the season-opener back on Oct. 28.

As the Pacers search for a way to end the team’s worst stretch since losing three-straight to start the season and get back to winning games, Hill and Ellis stepped up in a big way.

Ellis made a three-pointer early in the third quarter to put Indiana up 64-46 before Toronto went on a 10-0 run.

Ellis scored on a lay-up to stop the spurt and later made a free throw when Lowry was called for a technical to give the Pacers a 67-56 lead with 4:43 left in the third.

“The biggest thing was we got a win,” Ellis stressed.

“Hopefully, we can string some wins together while we’re back at home and get this thing back on the winning track.”

Indiana got off to a slow start and Toronto jumped out to a big lead right from the start.

Kyle Lowry and DeMar DeRozan each finished with 20 points and gave the Raptors a spark early on.

Lowry made two three-pointers and a basket while DeRozan scored a basket and a “three” to put the Raptors ahead 15-3 early in the opening quarter.

Lowry scored to make it 26-5 with 6:01 to go in the first.

Then Indiana went on its big run.

“A lot of it was us, throwing the ball away, throwing it around, and being careless with it,” said Raptors’ coach Dwane Casey.

“They turned up their intensity and got us on our heels, and we never recovered.”

Hill never let it get close again and scored nine points in the fourth quarter.

He finished with his fourth double-double of the season.

The Raptors next visit Charlotte on Thursday night.

Elsewhere in the NBA, Orlando dumped Brooklyn 105-82, the L.A. Clippers edged Detroit 105-103 (OT), Chicago downed Philadelphia 115-96, Memphis bounced Washington 112-95, and Miami upended Atlanta 100-88.

San Antonio bombed Utah 118-81, Dallas beat Phoenix 104-94, Denver downed Houston 114-108, and Portland shaded New Orleans 105-101.

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