Pacers attempt to halt skid vs. Nets

( - A seven-game winning streak probably seems like ages ago for the Indiana Pacers, who will try to prevent their losing streak from reaching five games Saturday versus the Brooklyn Nets.

The Pacers' slide has them even with the Boston Celtics for eighth in the Eastern Conference - two games behind the Miami Heat for seventh.

Indiana will have a quick turnaround after dropping a 95-92 decision to LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers Friday night at Quicken Loans Arena. James scored 29 points to help the Cavs clinch a playoff berth, while George Hill led the visitors with 24 points.

Roy Hibbert posted 20 points and eight rebounds, and Luis Scola provided 14 points and 11 boards off the bench. Indiana, which has failed to reach 100 points during this losing streak, shot 42.9 percent and only committed nine turnovers.

"I liked the way we played. ... We just got undone by a great performance by the best player in the game," Pacers coach Frank Vogel said of James.

The Pacers look to stop a two-game skid at home and will also welcome the Houston Rockets to town. They are 18-16 in Indy this season.

Indiana received more promising news on forward Paul George. George could make his season debut within the next few days, according to reports, and hasn't played since suffering a gruesome fracture to his leg last summer with Team USA. The Pacers could use George's services tonight in their playoff pursuit.

George was an All-Star each of the last two years and averaged 21.7 points, 6.8 rebounds and 3.5 assists over 80 games in 2013-14.

Brooklyn is 1 1/2 games off the final postseason slot in the East and has won three of the last four games, including Friday's thrilling 129-127 triple- overtime triumph versus the Milwaukee Bucks.

Brook Lopez was a force with 32 points on 13-of-20 shooting and also pulled down 18 rebounds for the Nets. Thaddeus Young and Joe Johnson scored 24 and 20 points, respectively, and Bojan Bogdanovic added 17 points off the bench.

"Everyone contributed tonight. Our bench had great energy. It was a big bounce back," Lopez said.

The Bucks finished with an 81-53 margin on the boards against Brooklyn, which played its sixth overtime game this season.

Friday's game between Milwaukee and Brooklyn was a rematch of a Nov. 19 clash at Barclays Center, which also lasted three overtimes in ex-Nets head coach Jason Kidd's return to Brooklyn as the coach of the Bucks.

The Nets are 16-20 on the road and will host Boston on Monday.

Indiana crushed Brooklyn, 110-85, on Dec. 27 at Barclays Center and has won the past five meetings between the teams. The Pacers and Nets will tangle again March 31 in Brooklyn.