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Pacers' Mahinmi left game vs. Pistons with sore lower back

Thomas J. Russo / USA TODAY Sports

The Indiana Pacers played shorthanded for much of Tuesday's game against the Detroit Pistons, but came away with their first win of the season regardless.

Starting center Ian Mahinmi left the game in the first quarter with a sore lower back, and did not return. Though the Pacers won 94-82, they subsequently struggled to contain Pistons center Andre Drummond, who finished the game with 25 points and a career-high 29 rebounds.

Mahinmi was shut out of the boxscore in five minutes before leaving the game. A starter for the first time in his career this season, he averaged nine points, 7.3 rebounds, and 1.7 blocks through the first three contests.

With their lone true center on the sidelines, the increasingly smallball-minded Pacers may have to downsize even further.

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