NBA playoffs: Pacers crush Knicks, 121–89, in Game 4 Mother’s Day massacre

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - MAY 12: Jalen Brunson #11 of the New York Knicks looks on during the fourth quarter against the Indiana Pacers in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Second Round Playoffs at Gainbridge Fieldhouse on May 12, 2024 in Indianapolis, Indiana. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images)

After winning many close games so far through the 2024 NBA playoffs, the New York Knicks hit a wall in Game 4 of their second-round series with the Indiana Pacers. The Pacers cruised to a 121–89 win at Gainbridge Fieldhouse, evening the best-of-seven series at 2–2.

Tyrese Haliburton showed no effects from an aching ankle that looked bad after Friday’s Game 3 and back spasms that have troubled him throughout the postseason. He led Indiana with 20 points, shooting 4-for-10 on three-pointers. But he played only 27 minutes as both teams gave their starters a rest in the fourth quarter.

Jalen Brunson scored 18 points, his lowest total of the 2024 postseason. His day ended early when coach Tom Thibodeau emptied the Knicks’ bench two minutes left in the third quarter. Even Josh Hart got an early rest after playing nearly every minute of the series’ first three games. He finished with two points.

T.J. McConnell added 15 for Indiana with Pascal Siakam and Obi Toppin both finished with 14, and Myles Turner notched 23.

Donte DiVincenzo managed only seven points for the Knicks, shooting 3-for-13, after an incredible 35-point performance in Game 3. Alec Burks led New York with 20 points, which indicates what sort of afternoon it was, even if more reserves ended up playing in the blowout. This was only the second time during the 2024 postseason that the Knicks didn’t score at least 100 points.

The Knicks began the game with a 2–0 lead approximately 40 seconds into the game. From there, Indiana began their first-half demolition. The Pacers raced out to 19–6 and 22–8 leads and ended the first quarter leading 34–14. Tyrese Haliburton scored eight points in the frame, while both Toppin and McConnellT.J. McConnell had seven.

New York had very little energy from the start, likely due in part to injuries catching up with them. OG Anunoby missed his second consecutive game with a strained left hamstring and Jalen Brunson was limited by a right foot injury while the Pacers continued playing physical defense from full court, rotating Aaron Nesmith, Andrew Nembhard and McConnell on him.

Brunson also appeared to hurt his left foot two minutes into the game after landing on Nesmith’s foot on a jump shot. He scored only one point in the quarter, shooting 0-for-5.

Game 5 of the Pacers-Knicks series is scheduled for Tuesday at Madison Square Garden. Tip-off is at 8 p.m. ET with the telecast on TNT.