The Pacers (19-34) wrap up their three-game homestand on Friday night when they host the Bulls (32-19) at the Fieldhouse.
This will be the last of four regular season games between the two Central Division rivals. The Pacers won the first game in late November when they were still able to show signs of a good team, but the Bulls took the next two as they moved their way to the top of the standings in the Eastern Conference.
The Pacers are catching the Bulls on the wrong end of a back-to-back following an overtime loss in Toronto on Thursday night. This along with injuries to Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso doesn’t give the Bulls much depth to tap into after several key players had to expend extra energy and minutes in Toronto. Zach LaVine will also sit this one out after playing through back spasms last night.
Oh, poor babies.
The Pacers depth issues go, well, a littler deeper than the Bulls for this one with expected starting center, Terry Taylor clocking in at 6’5. Nikola Vucevic has been a problem when the Pacers have a normal sized center, so this could be an issue unless Vuc is too tired to go.
The Bulls didn’t arrive in Indy until 3 a.m. ET so all of the schedule loss components are in place for the Pacers. If only, they had an available roster to truly take advantage. Time for another Rookie Show!
DraftKings Odds: Bulls -1, O/U 229 (latest DraftKings odds here)
When: 7:00 p.m. ET
When: Gainbridge Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN
TV: Bally Sports Indiana
Radio: 93.5 FM/107.5 FM
Projected Starting Lineups:
Pacers: Caris LeVert, Chris Duarte, Justin Holiday, Torrey Craig, Terry Taylor
Bulls: Coby White, Ayo Dosunmu, Javonte Green, DeMar DeRozan, Nikola Vucevic
IND: Goga Bitadze - questionable (sore right foot), Oshae Brissett - questionable (sore right ankle), Malcolm Brogdon - out (sore right Achilles), Isaiah Jackson - out (right ankle sprain), T.J. McConnell - out (right wrist ligament surgery), Domantas Sabonis - out (health and safety protocols), Myles Turner - out (left foot stress reaction), T.J. Warren – out (left navicular fracture)
CHI: Zach LaVine - out (right mid-back spasm), Lonzo Ball - out (left meniscus tear), Alex Caruso - out (right wrist fracture), Derrick Jones Jr. - out (right finger fracture), Marko Simonovic - out (G League assignment), Patrick Williams - out (left wrist ligament tear)
Please leave your thoughts and observations on the game in the comments.