The early tip time on New Year’s Eve always makes for an odd dynamic, moreso this season with no fans in the building, let alone muted plans for revelry to greet 2021. The matchup with the Cavs always seems to be a stress for the Pacers, especially since Andre Drummond joined Cleveland last year.
The Cavs took two preseason games from the Pacers, although both teams were deep into their benches when those games were decided late. The Pacers were also without Myles Turner and T.J. Warren.
Turner is back and defending the rim at an elite level. Warren, however is expected to miss the game on Thursday to rest his left foot as he tries to work himself through plantar faciitis in his right foot. That’s not a good way to end 2020.
As for the Cavs, they will be without Kevin Love who is dealing with an ankle sprain and rookie Isaac Okoro (left foot) who made his presence known against the Pacers in the preseason, including a game winning bucket.
The Cavs do have their developing dynamic backcourt duo of Darius Garland and Colin Sexton ready to go, but even with Warren out, the Pacers should have a depth advantage for the full 48 minutes.
Where: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN
When: 3:00 p.m. ET
TV: FOX Sports Indiana
Radio: 107.5 FM/AM 1070 The Fan
Projected Starting Lineups:
Pacers: Malcolm Brogdon, Victor Oladipo, Aaron Holiday, Domantas Sabonis, Myles Turner
Cavaliers: Colin Sexton, Darius Garland, Cedi Osman, Larry Nance Jr., Andre Drummond
IND: T.J. Warren (left foot) - out, Jeremy Lamb (knee) - out, Brian Bowen II (groin) - out, Goga Bitadze (ankle) - out
CLE: Kevin Love (ankle) - out, Isaac Okoro (left foot) - out, Matthew Dellavedova (concussion) - out, Kevin Porter Jr. (personal reasons) - out, Dylan Windler (broken hand) - out
Enemy view: Fear The Sword
Please leave your thoughts and observations on the game in the comments.