Game Preview: Pacers vs Mavericks
Wednesday, Jan. 20, 2021 at 7:00 PM ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse
After an eventful West Coast road trip, the Pacers (8-5) are back in Indianapolis and set to open a four-game homestand on Wednesday night, when they welcome Luka Doncic and the Dallas Mavericks (6-7) to Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Indiana's road trip featured two impressive wins at Golden State and Portland bookended by losses to Sacramento in the Clippers. In between, the Pacers traded away two-time All-Star Victor Oladipo, acquired a talented young wing in Caris LeVert, announced that a physical revealed a small mass on LeVert's kidney, saw their game at Phoenix canceled due to contact tracing within the Suns, and lost the NBA's leading shotblocker (Myles Turner) to a hand injury.
The Pacers will hope for a calmer week at home, with games against Dallas and Orlando followed by a back-to-back set with Toronto. At some point during the homestand, we could see the return of Jeremy Lamb. The veteran shooting guard tore the ACL in his left knee on Feb. 23 of last season. Lamb has been moving closer to a return on the court in recent weeks, fully participating in practices and accompanying the team on its recent road trip.
The Mavericks are off to an uneven start to the season, with several key players missing time due to injuries and/or COVID-related issues. None of that has deterred Doncic, however.
The 21-year-old phenom finished fourth in MVP voting last season and looks even better in the early days of his third NBA campaign. Doncic is averaging nearly a triple-double, ranking sixth in the NBA in scoring (27.2 points per game), 14th in rebounds (9.9 per contest), and second in assists (9.3 per game).
Pacers head coach Nate Bjorkgren deployed a box-and-one defense at times successfully last week against the likes of Stephen Curry and Damian Lillard. Expect to see similar tactics to try to slow down Doncic on Wednesday.
Pacers: PG - Malcolm Brogdon, SG - Edmond Sumner, SF - Justin Holiday, PF - Doug McDermott, C - Domantas Sabonis
Mavericks: PG - Luka Doncic, SG - Tim Hardaway Jr., SF - Wes Iwundu, PF - Kristaps Porzingis, C - Willie Cauley-Stein
Pacers: Jeremy Lamb - questionable (left knee rehabilation), JaKarr Sampson - questionable (sore back), Myles Turner - out (right hand avulsion fracture), Caris LeVert - not available (medical condition), T.J. Warren - out (left foot stress fracture)
Mavericks: Tim Hardaway Jr. - probable (left groin strain), Dorian Finney-Smith - out (health and safety protocols), Maxi Kleber - out (health and safety protocols), Dwight Powell - out (health and safety protocols), Josh Richardson - out (health and safety protocols)
March 8, 2020: Victor Oladipo hit the go-ahead jump shot with 38.3 seconds remaining to lift Indiana to a 112-109 win in Dallas.
Domantas Sabonis had 20 points, 17 rebounds, and six assists, recording his 50th double-double of the season to set a new NBA franchise record. Myles Turner also registered a double-double, finishing with 16 points, 13 rebounds, three blocks, and two steals in his return to his hometown.
Oladipo finished with 16 points, four rebounds, and seven assists in the victory. He was just 6-for-18 from the field, but connected on the biggest shot of the night.
Luka Doncic finished with 36 points, 10 rebounds, and eight assists for Dallas (39-26) in the loss.
- The Mavericks have won two of their last three games at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, including a 112-103 win on Feb. 3 last season.
- With a double-double on Wednesday, Domantas Sabonis would break his own franchise record for consecutive games with a double-double. He has 13 straight doubles-doubles to begin the season, which matches his longest streak from last season.
- Pacers forward Doug McDermott appeared in 23 for the Mavericks after being traded to Dallas from New York during the 2017-18 season.
Broadcast Information TV & Radio Listings »
TV: FOX Sports Indiana - Chris Denari (play-by-play), Quinn Buckner (analyst), Jeremiah Johnson (sideline reporter/host)
Radio: 93.5/107.5 The Fan - Mark Boyle (play-by-play), Eddie Gill (analyst), Pat Boylan (sideline reporter/host)