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Associated Press
Indiana Pacers forward Paul George (24) goes to the basket past Detroit Pistons forward Josh Smith (6) during the first half of an NBA basketball game Saturday, in Detroit.

Pacers rally from 25 down, beat Pistons in OT

AUBURN HILLS, Mich. – Paul George scored 30 points and the Indiana Pacers rallied from a 25-point second-quarter deficit to beat the Detroit Pistons 112-104 in overtime on Saturday night.

Evan Turner added 20 points for the Pacers, and David West scored six of his 15 points in overtime. Indiana leads Miami by 3 1/2 games in the race for the top seed in the Eastern Conference.

Josh Smith scored 23 points for the Pistons, who lost star center Andre Drummond in the first quarter to a neck injury. Drummond was able to walk off with some assistance, but he was expected to have further testing.

Detroit led 56-31 in the second quarter but couldn’t hold on.

It was the second-biggest comeback victory in the NBA this season, according to STATS. Golden State rallied from 27 down against Toronto on Dec. 3.

George had eight rebounds and seven assists, although he missed a jumper from the left elbow that could have won the game at the end of regulation.

Drummond, Detroit’s promising second-year center, left with 6:32 remaining in the first quarter. He appeared to be hit in the head inadvertently by the Pacers’ Roy Hibbert during a scramble near the basket.

Drummond stayed down through an entire timeout, and a stretcher was eventually brought onto the court. But he was able to get up and walk off toward the tunnel with some assistance.

Even without him, Detroit dominated the first half. A putback dunk by Jonas Jerebko pushed the lead to 25, and it was 60-41 at halftime.

The Pacers started the second half with eight straight points, and George scored 14 points in the quarter. Detroit led 79-73 after three.

It was tied at 83 when Smith put Detroit back ahead with a layup. Then Detroit’s Greg Monroe and Indiana’s Luis Scola became entangled, leading to a brief skirmish and technical fouls on both players.

A three-point play by Turner put Indiana ahead, but the Pacers couldn’t shake the Pistons until overtime. It was 100-all at the end of regulation, and with Indiana up 104-102, West made a couple jumpers to give the Pacers a six-point lead.

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