#CavsPacers Game Preview - January 12, 2018

Bankers Life Fieldhouse at 7:00 p.m. ET
Melissa Majchrzak/NBAE via Getty Images

Game Summary

The Cavaliers (26-15) round out their longest current road trip of the season on Friday night with a Central Division showdown against the Indiana Pacers (21-20). Tipoff from Bankers Life Fieldhouse is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. (ET).

The Wine & Gold will look for a bounce back win to finish off their five-game roadie after dropping their past two contests away from The Q.

Cleveland holds a 6-3 record against Central Division opponents this season, averaging 114.2 points on .505 shooting from the field (.385 3FG%) and 24.4 assists (12.7 turnovers).

The Cavs have also shot at least .500 from the field in eight of their nine games against the Central Division this season. Furthermore, they scored 100 points or more in seven of those nine contests.

Outside of the division, the Cavaliers have had consistent play from their bench all season long. Cleveland has received at least 40 points from their bench in six consecutive games, their longest since November 5-23, 2010 (nine straight). On the season, the Cavs reserves are averaging a franchise-record 41.5 points this season (third-most in the NBA).

Additionally, the Wine & Gold have been solid from the free-throw during the first half of this campaign. In last night's loss to Toronto, the Cavs shot 25-30 (.833) from the foul line - their 22nd time making at least .800 of their attempts from the charity stripe this season. Overall, the team is shooting a franchise-best .808 from the free throw line in 2017-18, which ranks second in the NBA. If Cleveland holds that percentage, they will break their previous mark of .805 from the line, set during the 1991-92 season.

Heading into tonight's tipoff, the Cavaliers will hope to take advantage of a slumping Pacers squad. In fact, Indiana has only notched two wins in their last eight contests while dropping their most recent matchup with the Miami Heat, 114-106, on Wednesday.

Going forward, the Pacers will look to avoid dropping to .500 if they can jump start a well-rounded scoring effort, which they were able to do against Miami. Despite the loss, Indiana saw four players tally 15-plus points, including Victor Oladipo's team-leading 26 points. In total, the Pacers rounded up five players in double-digit scoring (Oladipo-26, Sabonis-18, Bogdanovic-15, Stephenson-15 and Young-12).

Where to Catch the Action

TV: FOX Sports Ohio

Radio: WTAM 1100, 100.7 WMMS, 87.7 La Mega

Programming Note: On Friday, FOX Sports Ohio is airing the Blue Jackets – Canucks game (7:00 p.m.) and the Cavs – Pacers game (7:00 p.m.). To view TV listings, CLICK HERE.

For live in-game updates, follow @cavs, @CavsJoeG, @CavsFredMcLeod, @MrCavalier34, @CavsJMike and @chones22 on Twitter.

Probable Starters/Status Update*

#81 - Jose Calderon

#5 - JR Smith

#23 - LeBron James

#99 - Jae Crowder

#0 - Kevin Love

#2 - Darren Collison

#4 - Victor Oladipo

#44 - Bojan Bogdanovic

#21 - Thaddeus Young

#11 - Domantas Sabonis

Status Update: (Cavs) - Derrick Rose, (Left ankle sprain, Out), Iman Shumpert, (Left knee effusion, Out), Isaiah Thomas, (Right hip, Out)

Status Update: (Pacers) - Glenn Robinson III, (Left ankle surgery rehabilitation, Out), Edmond Sumner, (Left knee surgery rehabilitation, Out), Myles Turner, (Sore right elbow, Out)

*Subject to change.

Head-to-Head Matchup

Indiana leads Cleveland in the 2017-18 regular season series with two victories, notching one in The Land on November 1 and the other in Indiana on December 8, which snapped a 13-game Cavaliers winning streak.

Despite the Wine & Gold's struggles against the Pacers this season, a number of player have exceeded expectations against their next door neighbors in Indiana.

LBJ put up strong numbers in his two games against the Pacers this season (31.0 PPG, 8.0 RPG, 9.5 APG), while also putting in work against the entire Central Division. In total, James is averaging 29.3 points on .580 shooting from the field, including .469 (23-49) from three-point range, 5.2 rebounds, 8.8 assists and 2.1 steals in 35.9 minutes.

Kevin Love is averaging 21.4 points on .512 shooting from the field within the division, including .400 (20-50) from beyond the arc, 11.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists to go along with seven double-doubles.

The final game between the two Central Division foes will take place in exactly two weeks at The Q (January 26).

On Deck

With the Cavs' longest current road trip of the 2017-18 season in the books on Friday night, they'll head back to The Q for a rematch with the Golden State Warriors on Monday at 8:00 p.m. (ET). Monday's contest with the Warriors is the first of a three-game homestand for the Wine & Gold, which includes contests with the Orlando Magic (January 18 at 7:00 p.m.) and the Oklahoma City Thunder (January 20 at 3:30 p.m.).