Pacers vs Jazz

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Shootaround: Pacers Preparing for Booker's Debut

March 7, 2018 - With Pacers forward Trevor Booker set to make his debut on Wednesday night against the Jazz, head coach Nate McMillan explained how they are planning to work him into the rotation, and Booker talked about learning the playbook.

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Shootaround: Pacers Preparing for Booker's Debut

March 7, 2018 - With Pacers forward Trevor Booker set to make his debut on Wednesday night against the Jazz, head coach Nate McMillan explained how they are planning to work him into the rotation, and Booker talked about learning the playbook.
Mar 7, 2018  |  02:03

Trevor Booker on Signing with the Pacers

March 5, 2018 - Trevor Bookers speaks to the Pacers media about what he expects to bring to Indy after signing with the team.
Mar 5, 2018  |  04:14

Game Preview: Pacers vs Jazz

Wednesday, March 7, 2018 at 7:00 PM ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse
by Wheat Hotchkiss
Pacers.com Writer/Editor
@Wheat_Hotchkiss

Last Updated: March 7 at 1:45 PM ET

Matchup

Coming off a dramatic victory over the Bucks on Monday night, the Pacers (37-27) will look to extend their winning streak to four games on Wednesday night when they welcome the Utah Jazz (34-30) to Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Indiana gutted out a 92-89 win over Milwaukee on Monday despite an off night from All-Star guard Victor Oladipo, who scored just 14 points on 5-of-19 shooting and committed 10 turnovers. But Bojan Bogdanovic made up for Oladipo's struggles, matching his season high with 29 points, going 5-for-7 from 3-point range, and recovering a crucial jump ball with 5.1 seconds left before sealing the game at the free throw line.

The Pacers are now a season-high 10 games over .500 on the season and firmly in fourth place in the Eastern Conference, just a half-game out of third.

PLAYOFF PICTURE: Track the Pacers' Playoff Push »

Wednesday's opponent, the Jazz, have won 15 of their past 17 games (including 11 in a row to start that stretch) to climb back into the playoff chase. Despite their hot streak, Utah is still currently on the wrong side of the standings in 10th place in the Western Conference, but is just a game back of Denver for the eighth and final playoff spot.

Despite losing All-Star forward Gordon Hayward in free agency, Utah has been a solid squad all season, thanks in large part to rookie sensation Donovan Mitchell. The former University of Louisville standout is a frontrunner for Rookie of the Year honors, leading the Jazz in scoring 19.8 points per game.

For Indiana, Trevor Booker is expected to make his Pacers debut on Wednesday. The eighth-year pro signed with the team on Saturday night and was in uniform on Monday but did not see the floor. Pacers head coach Nate McMillan wanted him to get acclimated before joining the rotation, but said he does plan to play Booker against the Jazz.

Projected Starters

Pacers: PG - Cory Joseph, SG - Victor Oladipo, SF - Bojan Bogdanovic, PF - Thaddeus Young, C - Myles Turner
Jazz: PG - Ricky Rubio, SG - Donovan Mitchell, SF - Joe Ingles, PF - Jonas Jerebko, C - Rudy Gobert

Injury Report

Pacers: Darren Collison - out (left knee arthroscopic surgery rehab)

Jazz: Derrick Favors – questionable (neck spasms), Danté Exum – out (left shoulder surgery), Thabo Sefolosha – out (right knee surgery)

Last Meeting

January 15, 2018: Despite playing without Myles Turner and on the second night of a back-to-back, the Pacers handled the Jazz in Utah, 109-96.

Turner missed the game with a ligament sprain and muscle strain in his right elbow, but his teammates picked up the slack, particularly Victor Oladipo. Oladipo racked up a game-high 28 points on 9-of-16 shooting (5-of-8 from 3-point range), six rebounds, six assists, and two steals.

"We just know it's going to be a tough environment and we're going to have to be a close-knit group, we're going to have to be scrappy, and we're going to have to get after it on both ends of the floor," Oladipo told FOX Sports Indiana's Jeremiah Johnson about the team's mentality entering the road trip. "We did a great job doing that tonight."

Thaddeus Young added 17 points on 7-of-10 shooting, going 3-for-4 from 3-point range, while Domantas Sabonis tallied 15 points, eight rebounds, and four assists.

Rookie guard Donovan Mitchell led Utah with 23 points on Monday. Derrick Favors contributed 16 points and seven rebounds, while Rodney Hood added 15 points off the bench.

Noteworthy

  • With a win on Wednesday, the Pacers would sweep the regular season series with the Jazz for the first time since the 2014-15 season.
  • Indiana holds a narrow 43-42 edge all-time against Utah, including a 28-14 record in games played in Indianapolis.
  • Pacers center Al Jefferson spent three seasons in Utah from 2010-13, where he started 221 games and averaged 18.5 points, 9.5 rebounds, and 1.6 blocks per game.
  • Georges Niang, who was drafted by the Pacers in the second round of the 2016 NBA Draft and spent his rookie season in Indiana, is on a two-way contract with the Jazz and currently on assignment with their G League affiliate, the Salt Lake City Stars.

Tickets

The Pacers continue a three-game homestand when they welcome Donovan Mitchell and the Utah Jazz to Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Wednesday, March 7 at 7:00 PM ET. Tickets are available starting at just $7. 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 (sideline reporter/host)
Please Note: Inside Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Pacers radio broadcasts can be heard on 1080 AM instead of 1070.

Pacers Team Store Game Night Special

Pacers Plaid Lounge Pants - $12. The Game Night Special can be purchased at the Pacers Team Store on game day, as well as online from 10:00 AM-Midnight. Order Online »