A pair of Eastern Conference teams take the floor in the Big Apple. The Indiana Pacers are on the road as they travel to face the unraveling New York Knicks Saturday night. Indiana was upended 108-101 on the road by Detroit in their last game Friday night. New York was pasted 129-92 at home by Denver in their last contest Thursday night. The Knicks lead the all-time regular season series 91-87 but the Pacers have won the last six meetings, including a 103-98 home victory in the last matchup between the teams on March 12, 2019.
Indiana Pacers Play Second Game of Back to BackIndiana had won two straight and seven of their last eight before getting upended by the Pistons for the third time this season Friday night. The Pacers enter this contest second in the Central Division, 5.5 games behind the scorching Bucks. In a wild game, Indiana trailed by 13 after the opening quarter and by 11 at the half. The Pacers rallied to lead by four after three quarters and stood tied in the final minute. Indiana gave up the go-ahead bucket with 41.4 seconds to play as part of a game-ending 7-0 run that doomed them. The Pacers shot 45.8 percent from the field, including nine of 24 from three-point range, and were drubbed 51-33 on the glass. T.J. Warren led Indiana with 26 points in the loss.
The Pacers enter this contest 16th in scoring offense with 109.9 points per game on the season. Indiana is 19th in the league in rebounding with 44.7 boards per contest and stand 12th with 24.8 assists per game. The Pacers are 6th in the league in scoring defense as they allow 104.4 points per game this season. Malcolm Brogdon leads the team with 18.9 points, 4.9 rebounds plus 7.9 assists per game this season. Domantas Sabonis (18.4 points, 13 rebounds), Myles Turner (12.2 points, 5.8 rebounds, 2.2 blocks), T.J. Warren (18 points) and Jeremy Lamb (16.6 points) are all contributing on the offensive end. The Pacers still miss Victor Oladipo, who is on the comeback trail after last season’s knee injury: he has been practicing with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants of the G League. Indiana is tied for 4th in the league in field goal percentage as the team shoots 47.4 percent from the field this season. The Pacers are 28th in threes made per game as they have drained 9.7 triples a night while the team stands 8th in three-point shooting by hitting 36.7 percent from beyond the arc.
New York Knicks Hope to Get Things on TrackNew York suffered their eighth straight loss as they were waxed by Denver at home in their last game Thursday night. The Knicks enter this one with the worst record in the Eastern Conference and in the basement of the Atlantic Division, 12.5 games behind Boston. New York’s blowout loss led to the firing of coach David Fizdale: assistant Mike Miller is the interim head coach. The Knicks were down just six after the opening quarter before getting outscored 34-18 in the second to trail by 22 at the half. New York trailed by as many as 43 in the game before closing the game on a 9-2 run. The Knicks shot 41 percent from the field, including nine of 34 from three-point range, and lost the rebounding battle 48-33. New York allowed Denver to shoot 56.3 percent overall and 21 of 39 from beyond the arc. Mitchell Robinson led the Knicks with 17 points and seven rebounds off the bench in the loss.
The Knicks enter this game 30th in the league in scoring offense with 100.5 points per game on the year. New York is 20th in the league in rebounding with 44.1 boards a night while ranking 30th by dishing out 19.8 assists per contest this year. The Knicks are 17th in scoring defense by allowing 111.3 points per game this season. Rookie RJ Barrett is third on the team with 14.4 points plus 5.1 rebounds per contest on the year. Julius Randle (16.8 points, 8.5 rebounds), Marcus Morris Sr. (team-high 18.3 points, six rebounds), Kevin Knox II (7.9 points), Bobby Portis (8.9 points, 5.8 rebounds) and Mitchell Robinson (8.9 points, 6.7 rebounds, 1.9 blocks) are performing well in the new-look rotation for the Knicks this season. New York is 30th in the league in field goal percentage as they shoot 42.2 percent from the floor as a team. The Knicks are tied for 21st in threes per game as they knock down 10.7 triples per game while the team stands tied for 15th in three-point shooting as they connect on 35.8 percent of their attempts from beyond the arc.
The top trends for this contest according to Covers.com:
- Pacers are 5-1 ATS in their last 6 games following an ATS loss
- Pacers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games when their starting 5 players combine for more than 160 minutes of the previous day
- Pacers are 4-1 ATS in their last 5 games following a straight up loss
- Knicks are 1-4 ATS in their last 5 games vs. a team with a winning straight up record
- Knicks are 1-6 ATS in their last 7 games following a double-digit loss at home
- Knicks are 0-5 ATS in their last 5 Saturday games