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CLEVELAND — Gerald Green scored 20 points and Tyler Hansbrough, starting in place of the injured David West, had 18 points and 11 rebounds to lead the Indiana Pacers to a 111-90 win over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Monday night.
West missed the game with a sprained lower back sustained Saturday against Philadelphia, but the Pacers dominated without their second-leading scorer.
Green scored 13 points in the second quarter and Hansbrough, making just his second start of the season, led a balanced attack. Paul George scored 14 points while Roy Hibbert added 12 as the Pacers avoided losing three in a row for the third time this season.
C.J. Miles led Cleveland with 21 points, but injuries continued to plague the Cavaliers. Guard Dion Waiters didn’t play after the first quarter because of a sore left knee, and Cleveland played its fourth straight game without All-Star guard Kyrie Irving, who is out with a sprained left shoulder.
The bad blood that’s developed between the teams this season surfaced again late in the third quarter when Cavaliers center Marreese Speights was ejected for a flagrant foul 2 on George, the Pacers’ All-Star forward. George was driving for a fast-break layup when Speights grabbed him by the neck and threw him to the floor. The officials called Speights for a flagrant foul and ejected him after looking at the replay.
The teams had an altercation in their first meeting when Tristan Thompson and Hansbrough had to be separated after Thompson caught Hansbrough’s younger brother, Ben, with an errant elbow. Tyler Hansbrough and Daniel Gibson exchanged words when the teams met in December.
Green scored 13 points in the second quarter, including three 3-pointers in a stretch of 1:29, to spark a 20-7 run to end the period. Indiana led 40-38 midway through the quarter, but Green had 11 points and Tyler Hansbrough added a three-point play and a layup.
West missed just his second game this season, but Indiana continued to pull away in the second half. The Pacers built a 28-point lead in the fourth quarter.
Jeff Pendergraph added 11 points for Indiana, which had lost four of six. Indiana also maintained its hold on second place in the Eastern Conference standings.
Thompson had 20 points and 11 rebounds for Cleveland, which has lost three in a row and was down to 10 players by the end of the game.
NOTES: West, averaging 17.3 points, could play today at home against Orlando. “His back is pretty sore, so we’ll see,” said coach Frank Vogel. ... Irving, expected to miss about three more weeks, is no longer wearing a sling on his left arm. ... Cleveland F Luke Walton wore a temporary protective mask when he took the floor after sustaining a broken nose Saturday. He was run over attempting to take a charge from San Antonio’s Tim Duncan. Walton became the fourth Cleveland player this season to wear a mask after suffering a facial injury. Thompson, Kyrie Irving, and Tyler Zeller are the others.