Wednesday, November 27, 2013 at 7:00 PM ET at Time Warner Cable Arena
Game Preview: Pacers (13-1) at Bobcats (7-8)
Scott Agness | November 25, 2013
The Pacers make their first of two visits to Charlotte, North Carolina on Wednesday. The Bobcats are on their schedule just three times this season.
After a one-year experiment with Mike Dunlap as head coach – the team was 21-61 in 2013 – the Bobcats replaced him with Steve Clifford, an assistant in the league for four different teams over the last decade. In June’s draft, they selected Washington, Indiana’s Cody Zeller with the fourth pick. The 7-foot center is averaging 4.9 points and 4.1 rebounds in just over 18 minutes of action per game. In the offseason, Charlotte signed Al Jefferson, Anthony Tolliver, and James Southerland.
When the Pacers come to town, the Bobcats will be on a stretch of playing five of six games at their house. They’re second-to-last in scoring (89.4 points per game) and rank 19th in efficiency across the league. Although their offensive production is on the low end and they are the worst shooting team (41.1 percent), the Bobcats are allowing just 91.9 points per game, which trails only Indiana and San Antonio. Third-year point guard Kemba Walker leads the Bobcats with more than 16 points and four assists per game.
In their second game of the season last year, the Pacers lost in Charlotte by one point, but then they won the final three meetings – the latter two by 27 and 24 points, respectively.
The starters, minus George Hill, all have triple doubles with the Pacers. David West’s plus Paul George’s regular season triple-double both came against the Bobcats in separate games. In recent years, this series is heavily slanted in the Pacers’ favor. They’ve won 12 of the last 13, including the last three meetings.
Pacers: Danny Granger (out, strained left calf)
Bobcats: Brendan Haywood (out, left foot stress fracture)
"These guys don't feel like they're competing against the Charlotte Bobcats or whatever team. They're competing for greatness. They’re competing for home-court advantage and that’s something that has to be earned every single night." – Frank Vogel
“I think these guys just have a great deal of heart and determination. They’re hungry. This team is hungry and are capable on the defensive end. We have defensively-talented players on this basketball team and when they’re engaged and they’re playing hungry, they’re a beast.” – Vogel
“We’re going to be ready for Charlotte. I think they’re 7-8, so they’ve been playing well. It’s going to be a good matchup.” – Roy Hibbert
“I’m thankful for a good start and thankful to be doing what I love the most and that’s playing basketball because I couldn’t have a 9-5 [job]. I’d be awful at it.” – Hibbert ahead of Thanksgiving
- Six of the Bobcats’ seven victories have been decided by six points or fewer.
- Josh McRoberts, who played with the Pacers from 2008-11, is in his second season with Charlotte.
- Averaging just 97.2 points per game (20th in the NBA), the Pacers are outscoring their opponents by 9.8 points on average.
- Pacers power forward David West is from Garner, NC and attended Garner Magnet high school. Associate head coach Nate McMillan is from Raleigh, NC and attended William G. Enloe High School. He also played collegiately at Chowan University and NC State.
Feb. 13: Paul George recorded his first career triple-double against Charlotte in a 101-77 drumming. The Pacers led by three at the break, but then outscored the lowly Bobcats by 21 in the second half to roll to win, the first of five in a row for Indiana.
George was the third Pacers player to record a triple-double (23 points, 12 rebounds, 12 assists) last season. He was one of six Indiana players in double figures. Tyler Hansbrough finished with 19 and 10, while George Hill added 11. Byron Mullens led the Bobcats with 19 points Ramon Sessions chipped in 13.
Broadcast Information | Find Local Listings »
TV: FOX Sports Indiana - Chris Denari (play-by-play), Quinn Buckner (analyst), Brooke Olzendam (sideline reporter/host)
Radio: 1070 The Fan/FM 107.5, Pacers Radio Network - Mark Boyle (play-by-play), Michael Grady (host)
The Pacers return home after Wednesday night, and they'll host the Wizards at 8 PM on Black Friday. Tickets »