The Indiana Pacers will do their part to warm up downtown when they host the Charlotte Bobcats on Friday night. The two teams engaged in a chill affair through three quarters a couple of weeks ago in Charlotte until C.J. Watson exploded to ignite a 39-point fourth quarter to push the Pacers to a 25-point win.
Watson ended up draining six three-pointers to lead a balance Indiana attack with what remains his season-high 18 points. Despite the dead-eye distance display from Watson, the game was mired by missed shots, as the Pacers survived making just 38 percent of their attempts because Charlotte was even worse, making less than 32 percent of their field goal attempts.
Of course, the Pacers snuggle up to ugly games like they're sitting by a fire with hot cocoa and were able to maintain control of the game until putting it away in the closing quarter. A similar end result is the goal tonight, but let's all hope the path taken is a little more pleasing to the eye for all 48 minutes.
The Bobcats bring a couple of Indiana natives home with them as former Pacer and Carmel Greyhound, Josh McRoberts has started all 21 games this season at power forward. One of J-Mac's backups is rookie lottery pick and former IU Hoosier and Washington Hatchet, Cody Zeller. The big man is playing around 18 minutes in a reserve front court role, averaging 5.3 points and 4.2 rebounds per game.
Also, were the playoffs to start today, Charlotte would be a No. 5 seed (I know, the East) and appear on track to battle for a playoff spot throughout the year so they can certainly be considered a possible playoff opponent for the Pacers. That should help provide some additional motivation for the Blue and Gold.
For more on the Bobcats, check out Rufus On Fire. Also, please add your thoughts and observations on the game in the comments.