A pair of Eastern Conference foes take the floor in the Hoosier State. The Brooklyn Nets play the second game of a back to back as they travel to face the Indiana Pacers Saturday night. Brooklyn was in action on Friday night at home as they hosted the New York Knicks in an Atlantic Division matchup. Indiana won their season opening game in a rout, pasting the Grizzlies 111-83 at home Wednesday night: they were in Milwaukee to face the Bucks Friday night. The Pacers have a 104-72 advantage in the all-time regular season series between the teams. Indiana swept last season’s series and has won seven straight meetings between the teams, including a 108-103 win on the road in the last meeting on February 14.
Brooklyn Nets Playing Third Game in Four Nights
Brooklyn has had a tough starting slate to the season as they played in Detroit Wednesday night before hosting the Knicks Friday. That gives the Nets three games in four nights to kick off their schedule, which is tough for any team, much less one that struggled out of the gate. Brooklyn was terrible in the second game of back to backs last season, going 4-11 in those contests. The Nets gave up an average of 114.1 points per game, up 3.8 points from their norm of 110.3 points a game. Brooklyn was outscored by seven points a game in those contests, compared to 3.7 points per game over the course of the full season. Brooklyn finished last season 46-36 ATS, including an impressive 27-14 mark on the road. The under was a slightly better option in Nets’ games last season, posting a 43-37-2 mark. On the road, it was the over that hit slightly more often, as it went 21-19-1 when Brooklyn was the visiting team. In their season opener, the Nets covered against the Pistons while the game stayed under the total.
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) October 17, 2018
The Nets shot 48.8 percent from the field, which was solid enough, but their perimeter shooting was awful. Brooklyn was just five of 27 from beyond the arc, meaning that they hit 63.6 percent (35 of 55) from inside the arc. The Nets also hit only 15 of 22 free throws, which proved costly in a tight game. Brooklyn was beaten 46-39 on the glass and turned the ball over 17 times, leading to 26 Detroit points. Caris LeVert led the Nets with 27 points in the loss while Spencer Dinwiddie chipped in 23 points and six assists off the bench. Jarrett Allen had 17 points, 10 rebounds plus four blocks while Joe Harris finished with 13 in a losing effort. D’Angelo Russell was held to eight points on three of nine shooting while Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, DeMarre Carroll and Allen Crabbe all missed the game. Crabbe was probable for Friday’s game against the Knicks while Hollis-Jefferson remained questionable and Carroll is out.
Atkinson was disappointed in the lack of perimeter shots when he spoke after the game.
We didn’t have enough attempts,” said Atkinson. “That’s what I’m mad about. We had 26 attempts. I think the goal is in the 40s. That’s where I want to be.
Indiana Pacers Look to Jump to 2-0 Start
Indiana had little problem dispatching Memphis in their season opener to get their 2018-19 slate off on the right foot. The Pacers, similar to the Nets, play their third game in four nights after traveling to face the Bucks Friday night. Indiana was 6-8 in the second game of back to backs last season but it was their offense that sputtered in those situations. The Pacers averaged only 100.5 points per game in those games last year compared to their season average of 105.6 points a night. Indiana’s defense was tighter as they allowed an average of 102.9 points a game as opposed to their season average of 104.2 per contest. The Pacers were 24-17 ATS at home last season with the under the strong play at 25-15-1 in those games. Indiana easily covered the line at home in their opener and the game fell under the total.
— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) October 18, 2018
The Pacers led by 11 after the opening quarter against Memphis and never looked back. Indiana extended the edge to 17 at the half, 18 after three quarters and pulled away in the fourth. The Pacers blistered the Grizzlies’ defense by shooting 56.6 percent from the floor, including 10 of 26 from beyond the arc. Indiana destroyed Memphis 57-28 on the glass and held the Grizzlies to 29.8 percent shooting, easily offsetting 20 turnovers. The Pacers were led by Bojan Bogdanovic’s 19 points. Victor Oladipo had 16 points, Domantas Sabonis (15 boards) and Tyreke Evans each added 14, Doug McDermott chipped in 12, Cory Joseph put in 11 and Thaddeus Young had 10 as the Pacers used a balanced attack to roll to the easy victory. No player logged more than 28 minutes in the game as Nate McMillan was able to use his bench efficiently.
- Pacers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400
- Pacers are 7-2 ATS in their last 9 home games
- Nets are 1-4 ATS in the last 5 meetings in Indiana
- Nets are 1-6 ATS in the last 7 meetings
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
Both teams are coming off the second game of a back to back situation here but the Pacers are the better team on paper. Indiana put seven players in double figures in the opener as they aggressively crashed the glass. Atkinson wants the Nets to jack up more threes, which doesn’t make a ton of sense when they shot it so poorly from distance last season and looked even worse in the opener. Brooklyn already failed to pick up a win in their first road game of the season. Things aren’t any better here as the Pacers roll to the victory.
Prediction: Indiana Pacers -9.5
Full-Game Total Pick
Something has to give when it comes to this contest based on last year’s numbers in teh second game of back to back situations. Either Brooklyn’s defense will improve or Indiana’s offense in these situations will look better than it did a year ago. It’s hard to think that the Nets are going to be better because they tend to give up easy transition opportunities off long rebounds and turnovers. Can the Pacers take advantage of Brooklyn’s seemingly flawed system and pick up some fast break opportunities to put the Nets on their heels?
The under is 15-7-1 in the Nets’ last 23 vs. Central Division foes. Indiana has seen the under go 4-0 in their last 4 home games vs. a team with a road winning % of less than .400, 5-0 in their last five against Atlantic Division opponents, 6-1 in the second game of their last seven back to back situations, 6-1 in their last seven at home against teams with a losing road record and 4-1 in their last five at home. The Pacers put together a solid showing on both ends and help keep this one under the number.
Prediction: Under 216.5
Half-Time Side Pick
Indiana was kind of flat against Milwaukee as they were unable to generate the same kind of offensive performance that they put up against Memphis. Still, the Pacers are facing a Brooklyn team that struggled defensively in their first two games. They gave up 103 points to Detroit on the road and 105 at home to the Knicks though they ended up with a two point win Friday. Brooklyn won the rebounding battle 55-36 against New York but Indiana has better depth and rotational talent than the Knicks. Indiana gets the edge at the half as they are at home here. We saw the Nets struggle on the road in their opener and that gives the Pacers the edge.
Prediction: Indiana Pacers -4.5
Half-Time Total Bet
Indiana has been consistent offensively this season, scoring 52 and 53 points in the first half of their two games. The Pacers had two different situations in their games as they allowed only 39 points against the Grizzlies before giving up 62 to the Bucks. Brooklyn hung 57 points on the Knicks in the opening half Friday night and had 51 in the opening half against the Pistons. If both teams put together a regular offensive showing, this one ends up over the number at the half.
Prediction: Over 102