In what may be a rare situation this season, the Pacers are favored to win against the Spurs who, like the Pacers, are all in on a rebuild. Thus far the Spurs have gone a bit further in batting their eyelashes at the lottery odds, sending young talent like Dejounte Murray to Atlanta in the offseason while offering big roles to even younger players on the roster like rookie Jeremy Sochan.
Sounds familiar I realize, but any motives by Coach Pop and company were revealed with their 28-point loss on opening night to Charlotte. The Hornets did not start the season in great shape themselves, which included playing without LaMelo Ball. But...maybe it was opening night jitters for the Spurs.
The Pacers will remain without Myles Turner who hopes to return to the lineup on the upcoming road trip. Jalen Smith is questionable on the injury list with a sore knee so we’ll see if he continues to move over to the center spot.
Chris Duarte left the opener bloodied after a shot to the eye or somewhere on the face, but apparently it was merely a flesh wound so No. 3 should be good to go. Regardless, Tyrese Haliburton and Bennedict Mathurin will be ready to go, assuming their tag team role in making things go for the Pacers.
This is certainly a good opportunity for the Pacers to cash in a win in front of the home fans on a Friday night. Might even coerce some to return!
DraftKings Odds: Pacers -1.5, O/U 232.5 (latest DraftKings odds here)
When: 7:00 p.m. ET
Where: Gainbridge Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN
TV: Bally Sports Indiana/Bally Sports + app
Radio: 93.5 FM/107.5 FM
Projected Starting Lineups:
Pacers: Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield, Chris Duarte, Terry Taylor, Jalen Smith
Spurs: Tre Jones, Devin Vassell, Jeremy Sochan, Keldon Johnson, Jakob Poeltl
IND: Aaron Nesmith - questionable (sore left foot), Jalen Smith - questionable (sore right knee), Daniel Theis - out (sore right knee), Myles Turner - out (sprained left ankle)
Please share your thoughts and observations on the game in the comments.