Game Preview: Pacers at Bucks (Preseason)
Wednesday, October 4, 2017 at 8:00 PM ET at the BMO Harris Bradley Center
When the new-look Pacers take the floor on Wednesday night at the BMO Harris Bradley Center to begin their preseason slate, it will have been 163 days since the last time Indiana suited up for a game.
In those 163 days, the Pacers team — and franchise — has undergone a number of changes, the culmination of which will be on display when the Pacers take on the Bucks at 8:00 PM ET.
It started early in the offseason with a change of leadership, as President of Basketball Operations Larry Bird stepped down from his role, passing the torch to Kevin Pritchard.
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During the draft, trade rumors swirled around Paul George, who was believed to be uninterested in re-signing with Indiana following the conclusion of his contract. Pritchard selected TJ Leaf and Ike Anigbogu out of UCLA, stocking Indiana's frontcourt with talented forwards. Additionally, Indiana bought the rights to Edmond Sumnner out of Xavier, a rangy guard recovering from injuries.
Shortly after the draft, the long-awaited trade happened, with Indiana shipping Paul George to the Oklahoma City Thunder in exchange for IU-product Victor Oladipo and second-year forward Domantas Sabonis.
With a few moves in free agency (Bojan Bogdanovic, Darren Collison) and a couple veterans waived or not re-signed (Monta Ellis, Lavoy Allen) the Pacers entered the 2017-18 with a dramatic makeover. A youth movement stocked with talented players at the center and power forward positions, as well as capable scorers and distributers in the backcourt with Oladipo, Collison, and trade-acquisition Cory Joseph.
With a new look came a fresh feel. As the league switched from Adidas uniforms to Nike, the Pacers underwent one of the boldest changes in the NBA, switching up their look to give a full refresh to the Pacers concept (Learn More »).
But for all that has changed, much remains the same for Indiana. Myles Turner, considered a cornerstone of future success, enters his third season in the NBA with all arrows pointing up in his development as a player. Lance Stephenson, who returned to Indiana last season for the tail end of the regular season, has spent an offseason of work in Indiana's new practice facility, the St. Vincent Center, and is expected to seize the role of sixth man.
And while Glenn Robinson III will miss the start of the season with an ankle sprain that occurred during practice, his development this season will be another area of focus for Indiana.
With the amount of wholesale change for the franchise entering the 2017-18 NBA Season, what the Pacers will be on the floor remains an enticing question. But one thing is for sure — after 163 days, it's once again time for Pacers basketball.
Pacers: PG - Darren Collison, SG - Victor Oladipo, SF - Bojan Bogdanovic, PF - Thaddeus Young, C - Myles Turner
Bucks: PG - Malcolm Brogdon, SG - Sterling Brown, SF - Khris Middleton, PF - D.J. Wilson, C - John Henson
Pacers: Glenn Robinson III - out (left high ankle sprain), Edmond Sumner - out (knee)
Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo - questionable (personal reasons), Thon Maker - questionable (ankle), Jabari Parker - out (knee)
April 6, 2017: In their final Hickory Night of the 2016-17 season, the Pacers dispatched the Bucks 104-89.
While the game was close early, Indiana pushed down on the gas in the second half, pulling away from Milwaukee for the comfortable victory and bettering its chances of clinching a postseason berth.
"We kept getting stops," explained Kevin Seraphin, who scored 11 points off the bench. "We were working together and we were connected tonight. We played as a team and we just kept getting stops. We just did a good job and we need to keep playing."
Thaddeus Young recorded a double-double in the win, scoring 12 points and snaring 11 rebounds.
- Bucks guard Gerald Green was a member of the Pacers for the 2012-13 season
- The Bucks lead the all-time series agains the Pacers 97-86
- The Pacers and Bucks had identical records last season, with each team going 42-40
The Pacers will tip off the 2017-18 regular season by hosting the Brooklyn Nets on Opening Night presented by Kroger on Wednesday, Oct. 18 at 7:00 PM ET. Find Tickets »
Broadcast Information TV & Radio Listings »
TV: FOX Sports Indiana - Chris Denari (play-by-play), Quinn Buckner (analyst), Jeremiah Johnson (sideline reporter/host)
Radio: 107.5 FM/AM 1070 The Fan - Mark Boyle (play-by-play), Pat Boylan (studio host)