BALTIMORE, JAN. 25 -- The Indiana Pacers, who had made recent habits of fighting with, and losing to, the Washington Bullets, finally landed a stinging blow tonight.

A game the Bullets should have won slipped away amid a flurry of Pacers layups and free throws in the final minutes, and Indiana used a late 13-0 run to escape with a precious road victory, 106-100, before 8,808 at Baltimore Arena.

The Bullets (18-22), who had a six-game home winning streak broken, led virtually throughout -- by 13 points in the second quarter, 11 at halftime and 10 entering the fourth quarter. They still were ahead by 90-82 with 6:36 to play, and by 97-93 on Harvey Grant's jump shot at the 3:18 mark.

But they didn't score again until Grant's three-pointer at the final buzzer, self-destructing with a succession of turnovers and hurried, ill-advised shots.

The Pacers (17-24), meanwhile, got two free throws by Detlef Schrempf, then five straight points by Chuck Person and a pair of breakaway baskets by Reggie Miller (21 points) to secure their third road triumph in four tries -- that after beginning 1-16 away from home.

"This is the kind of game that's the greatest thing in the world to win, and a real downer to lose," said Person, who finished with a team-high 25 points on 12-for-19 shooting. "We've had kind of a spirited rivalry with them, so it was good to stick them with one like this. . . . I don't care much for the Washington Bullets."

The Bullets had a chance to draw to within two games of .500, which would have been the first time they had reached that plateau since they were 1-3. Instead, they were left with the distressing mirror image of Wednesday's victory over Atlanta, when Washington finished with a 12-0 spurt for a five-point win.

"We've had both sides of it in two days," said Bullets guard Darrell Walker, who fell two rebounds short of his third straight triple-double. " . . . We didn't do the things {late in the game} that we did to get the lead in the first and second quarters. This was a game we definitely should have won."

Bernard King led all scorers with 34 points, and Grant added 27. That duo combined to connect on 27 of 46 field goal attempts, but the rest of the Bullets were just 14 for 39.

With the Pacers concentrating on King and Grant down the stretch, it was the lack of balance that did in the Bullets, who scored but 10 points in the final 6 1/2 minutes and fell into a third-place tie with New York in the Atlantic Division.

"We had the game under control on numerous occasions," Washington Coach Wes Unseld said. " . . . I thought there were maybe two or three occasions where I thought we could have put them too far down in a hole, but we didn't come through. It's disappointing."

If nothing else, tonight's contest promised excitement. The Bullets had won this season's two previous meetings with Indiana -- each time by two points in overtime. And twice in the past year, the teams had been involved in fights, with King squaring off against Person here last season and Pervis Ellison coming to blows with Rik Smits last month at Indianapolis.

Dick Versace was fired as the Pacers coach the day after that altercation. Indiana improved to 8-8 tonight under successor Bob Hill and is one victory away from clinching its first winning month of the season.

The Pacers began sluggishly, and the outcome might have been put to rest early on. But each time the Bullets threatened to pull away, they stumbled and let Indiana back into contention, and another frantic finish seemed inevitable.

The Pacers missed their first five field goal attempts and committed four turnovers in the opening four minutes while the Bullets rushed to leads of 8-0, 10-1 and 14-5.

Ellison provided the Bullets a second-quarter lift with his rebounding and shot-blocking, and King had nine points in the period as Washington stretched its advantage to as many as 13 just before halftime.

Bullets Notes: Another weigh-in for forward John Williams is scheduled for Monday. Williams will resume practicing after he reaches the prescribed 260-pound level; he reportedly last weighed in at 265.