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Tune-In Tidbits: Pacers vs. Bucks and Suns vs. Pelicans on ESPN

Get ready for Wednesday's ESPN doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.

Brian Martin, for NBA.com

Giannis Antetokounmpo and Domantas Sabonis rank 2nd and 5th, respectively, in points in the paint this season.

Get ready for Wednesday’s ESPN doubleheader with five key stats to know about each matchup.


Pacers (11-9) at Bucks (12-8), 7 p.m. ET, ESPN

• The Pacers scored a season-high 134 points in Tuesday’s win over Memphis, shooting a season-best 59.8% overall and 55.2% on 3-pointers. Domantas Sabonis led the Pacers with 32 points, 13 rebounds and five assists. Only four players have hit those marks in a game this season: Luka Doncic (three times), Nikola Jokic (two) and Sabonis’ opponent on Wednesday, Giannis Antetokounmpo.

• The Pacers lead the NBA in points in the paint (54.9 ppg), but face a Bucks team that ranks second in fewest points in the paint allowed (39.9 ppg). Individually, Giannis Antetokounmpo ranks second in points in the paint (16.1 ppg) and Domantas Sabonis ranks fifth(14.3 ppg).

• Milwaukee’s Jrue Holiday and Indiana’s TJ McConnell both rank in the top six in steals (Holiday is fourth, McConnell sixth) and in the top 11 in deflections (McConnell 10th, Holiday 11th). The Pacers rank fifth in points off turnovers (19.7 ppg) while the Bucks rank 19th (16.5 ppg).

• The Bucks (21.6 per game) and Pacers (20.0 per game) rank fourth and sixth, respectively, in wide-open 3-point attempts per game. The Bucks have taken advantage of these open looks as they shoot 42.4% from 3-point range when the closest defender is at least six feet away (fourth in NBA). The Pacers have shot just 36.2% on these open looks (28th in NBA).

• Indiana is playing its fourth back to back of the season — the Pacers are 3-0 on the second night of a back-to-back so far this season, winning by an average of 8.3 points.

 

The Suns beat the Pelicans by 25 points on Dec. 29 despite Devin Booker (8 points) having his lowest scoring game since April 2019.

Suns (11-8) at Pelicans (7-12), 9:30 p.m. ET, ESPN

• After missing four games with a hamstring strain, Devin Booker made his return on Monday night against Dallas and capped off the night with the fifth game-winning shot of his career (and second against the Mavericks). Here’s the list starting with the most recent:

  • Feb. 1, 2021: Suns vs. Mavericks on a 25-foot 3-point pullup jumper with 1.5 seconds remaining
  • Aug. 4, 2020: Suns vs. Clippers on an 18-foot turnaround fadeaway jumper as time expired
  • Nov. 4, 2018: Suns vs Grizzlies on a 17-foot pullup jumper with 1.7 seconds remaining
  • March 11, 2017: Suns vs. Mavericks on a 19-foot turnaround fadeaway jumper as time expired
  • Feb. 3, 2017: Suns vs. Kings on a 20-foot fadeaway bank shot as time expired

• During the Suns’ three-game win streak, Chris Paul is averaging 25.3 points, 8.3 assists, 5.0 rebounds and 2.7 steals. He is shooting 54.9% from the field, 50% on 3-pointers and 93.3% from the free throw line.

• Zion Williamson leads the NBA in points in the paint (17.9 ppg). Of his 284 field goal attempts, only 14 have come from outside the paint. Williamson is shooting 62.8% (137/218) inside the restricted area, 46.2% from the rest of the paint (24/52), 25% (1/4) from mid-range and 30% (3-10) from 3-point range.

• The Pelicans average 25.0 free throw attempts per game, which ranks fourth in the league and first in the Western Conference. However, they are shooting a league-low 71.4% on those attempts. Conversely, the Suns average just 18.9 free throw attempts per game (29th in the league), but shoot 83.3% when they do get to the line (second in NBA).

• The Suns are scoring 13.2% of their points on mid-range shots — the third-highest percentage in the league — and up from the 10.4% the Suns posted in each of the past two seasons. The addition of Chris Paul is a key here as he averages 2.8 mid-range field goals made per game, the fourth-most in the league.

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