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Expecting threes to be wild when Pacers visit Cleveland
Neither the Pacers nor Cavs are shy about letting it fly from behind the arc.
The Pacers take on the Cavaliers in Cleveland for their road opener which should be a decidedly stiffer challenge than the home opener against the Wiz.
If you enjoy three-pointers, this game should thrill you. The Pacers attempted 43 long balls in the opener and made a bunch (20 to be exact) led by Bruce Brown knocking down 6 of 8 triples.
The Cavs also shot 43 threes in their opening win over Brooklyn on Wednesday, then followed that effort up with 45 3PAs on Friday night when they lost a 10-point lead late to dump their home opener to OKC.
The Cavs shot 43 or more threes just three times last season, so with Max Strus added to fire alongside Donovan Mitchell, the three-heavy attack may be the norm in Cleveland this season. Strus and Mitchell have combined to shoot half of the teams deep shots thru two games. The scary thing for the Pacers is that Cleveland only made 12 of their 45 3PAs last night, so if they find the range tonight, betting the over would be advised.
The Pacers do catch the Cavs playing their third game in four days with Mitchell logging 42 minutes in the tough loss to the Thunder on Friday. Also, Darius Garland missed the game last night and remains questionable with a hammy. All positive variables for the Pacers.
For the nowhere near positive variables for the Pacers, Tyrese Haliburton showed up on the injury report on Friday with a non-Covid illness and is also questionable. Needless to say, I’ve buried the lede because the thought of playing without Hali already evokes painful memories of so many losses last season.
This is a different team, with better depth to manage without Haiburton, but do they have to test it out so early in the regular season? Plus, this mathcup with the Cavs is daunting, even with Haliburton. Was really looking forward to seeing how this one played out at full strength.
Regardless, in a make or miss league, this will definitely be a make or miss (three pointers) game.
Where: Rocket Mortgage FieldHouse, Cleveland, OH
When: Saturday, Oct. 28 2023
TV: Bally Sports
Radio: 93.5/107.5 The Fan
Pacers: Tyrese Haliburton, Bruce Brown, Bennedict Mathurin, Obi Toppin, Myles Turner
Cavaliers: Darius Garland, Max Strus, Donovan Mitchell, Isaac Okoro, Evan Mobley
Pacers: Tyrese Haliburton (illness) - questionable
Cavliers: Darius Garland (hamstring) - questionable, Dean Wade (illness) - questionable, Jarrett Allen (left ankle) - out
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