Heat back atop East, beat Pacers 98-86 - WSVN-TV - 7NEWS Miami Ft. Lauderdale News, Weather, Deco

Heat back atop East, beat Pacers 98-86

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By TIM REYNOLDS

AP Basketball Writer

MIAMI (AP) -- LeBron James scored 36 points, and the Miami Heat moved back atop the Eastern Conference standings by running past the Indiana Pacers 98-86 on Friday night.

The Heat scored the first 16 points of the second half and weren't in trouble again. Miami (54-25) leads the Pacers (54-26) by a half-game in the East race.

Mario Chalmers scored 13, Udonis Haslem added 11 and Chris Bosh and Ray Allen each scored 10 for the Heat.

Paul George scored 22 for Indiana, which got 18 from David West, 12 from Luis Scola and 11 from Lance Stephenson. Pacers center Roy Hibbert had only five points and one rebound, grabbing it with just over 2 minutes left in the game.

Miami has games against Atlanta, Washington and Philadelphia left. Win them all, and the Heat would have home-court advantage through at least the East finals -- which went seven games against Indiana last season.

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