INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Tyrese Haliburton scored 29 points, Buddy Hield made a 3-pointer three seconds into the game and added 25, and the Indiana Pacers beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 135-126 on Thursday night.
Haliburton was 6 for 8 from 3-point range and Hield, who leads the NBA in 3-pointers, was 5 for 6. The Pacers finished 19 of 31 from beyond the arc.
Indiana trailed by seven early in the fourth quarter before rallying. Hield fed Aaron Nesmith for a go-ahead dunk to give the Pacers a 120-119 lead with 4:26 remaining. Haliburton converted a three-point play on the next possession and the Pacers never surrendered the lead.
Bennedict Mathurin scored 23 points, Nesmith had 22 and Myles Turner 14 as Indiana snapped a five-game losing streak against the Cavaliers, who have lost three in a row.
All-Star guard Donovan Mitchell scored 28 points to lead a balanced Cleveland offense with seven double-digit scorers. Mitchell sank five of the Cavaliers’ 12 3-pointers.
Cleveland’s Caris LeVert and Jarrett Allen each had 19 and All-Star guard Darius Garland finished with 18 points and eight assists.
The 3-point barrage began just three seconds in as the opening tip was batted directly to Hield, who turned and swished a shot that was the fastest 3-pointer recorded since play-by-play began in 1996-97. In the first half, the Pacers hit 9 of 15 from beyond the arc and the Cavaliers 7 of 13. The Cavaliers led 68-64 at halftime.
Cavaliers: Dropped to 6-10 on the road. … Forward Cedi Osman (back) was a last-minute inactive and center Robin Lopez (illness) missed his second consecutive game.
Pacers: Coach Rick Carlisle was assessed two technicals and ejected with 1:29 remaining in the third quarter after arguing that an off-balance Mitchell threw the ball off the backboard to himself. … Mathurin leads the league in bench scoring at 17.6 points per game.
Cavaliers: Visit Chicago Bulls on Saturday.
Pacers: Host L.A. Clippers on Saturday.