Last Updated: Jan. 4 at 10:45 AM ET
The Pacers open up 2019 with hopes of extending their winning streak to six games as they tip off a five-game road trip in Chicago.
Indiana (25-12) has stacked wins by taking care of business against teams with sub-.500 records. The Pacers enter the new year a league-best 19-2 against teams that ended 2018 with a losing record.
On Friday against the Bulls (10-28), they'll look to extend that run as they search for their third victory against Chicago this season.
The Bulls have looked like a stronger team since the return of Lauri Markkanen, who leads the team with 7.4 rebounds per game. Offensively, Chicago is led by Zach LaVine, who is posting a career-best 23.3 points per game this season.
The Pacers — who have the league's second-ranked defensive rating (102.2) — matchup favorably against the Bulls, owners of the league's worst offensive rating at 100 points per 100 possessions.
But even with that mismatch, the anchor of the Pacers' defense, Myles Turner, broke his nose during Indiana's New Year's Eve win over the Hawks, leaving his availability in doubt for Friday's game. Following the game, Turner seemed optimistic that he would be able to play with the assistance of a mask to protect his nose.
If Turner is unable to go, Domantas Sabonis should see a spike in minutes, as well as reserve forward Kyle O'Quinn, who posted a double-double in his last appearance with extended playing time.
Wendell Carter Jr.
Pacers: PG - Darren Collison, SG - Victor Oladipo, SF - Bojan Bogdanovic, PF - Thaddeus Young, C - Myles Turner
Bulls: PG - Kris Dunn, SG - Zach LaVine, SF - Chandler Hutchison, PF - Lauri Markkanen, C - Wendell Carter Jr.
Pacers: Aaron Holiday - questionable (illness), Myles Turner - questionable (broken nose)
Bulls:: Bobby Portis - doubtful (right ankle sprain), Denzel Valentine - out (left ankle surgery)
December 4, 2018: Back at home after a four-game road trip out West, the Pacers gutted out a 96-90 victory over the Chicago Bulls at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Darren Collison scored 18 of his season-high 23 points after halftime for Indiana, while Myles Turner was a monster on both ends, racking up 18 points, 11 rebounds, and five blocks in the victory.
"It wasn't a pretty win," Turner said. "But wins are hard to come by in this league and we got it done."
Lauri Markkanen led Chicago with 21 points and 10 rebounds, going 5-for-13 from 3-point range in just his second game back from a sprained elbow injury that sidelined him for the first 23 games of the season.
- The Bulls traded forward Justin Holiday (brother of Pacers rookie Aaron Holiday) to Memphis on Thursday in exchange for Wayne Selden, MarShon Brooks, and two second-round draft picks. In a corresponding move, Chicago waived guard Cameron Payne.
- The Bulls lead the all-time series 97-88, but the Pacers have won three straight against Chicago.
- The Pacers are 19-5 against the Eastern Conference this season.
After a five-game road trip, the Pacers return home to face Devin Booker and the Phoenix Suns on Tuesday, Jan. 15 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 The Fan - Mark Boyle (play-by-play), Pat Boylan (studio host)