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Nets Beat Pacers, Will Face the Heat in Second Round

The Nets held on to defeat the Pacers at Conseco Fieldhouse Thursday night and moved on to the Conference Semifinals against Miami who beat Chicago a few hours later. The Nets struggled offensively in the first half, but Richard Jefferson and their defense kept them in the game, and the score was tied at the break. A 12-2 Nets run early in the third gave them a 10-point lead, but the Pacers came back twice and made it a two-point game with three minutes to go in the fourth. The Nets got huge plays from Nenad Krstic (three-point play), Jason Kidd (offensive rebound), Vince Carter (drive) and Jefferson (block) down the stretch before Krstic and Jefferson sealed the game with free throws. RJ led the way with 30 points on 10-of-13 from the field, while Carter added 24 and Kidd recorded his second rebound-assist double-double of the series. Anthony Johnson scored a career-high 40 points for the Pacers, but did not get much help.