Pacers vs Nets

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Pacers Feeling a Special Bond, Playing "Beautiful Basketball"

Dec. 22, 2017 - After practice on Friday, the Pacers talked about having a strong bond with each other, and how their sharing of the basketball has led to a high-powered offense.

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Pacers Feeling a Special Bond, Playing "Beautiful Basketball"

Dec. 22, 2017 - After practice on Friday, the Pacers talked about having a strong bond with each other, and how their sharing of the basketball has led to a high-powered offense.
Dec 22, 2017  |  02:07

Game Preview: Pacers vs Nets

Saturday, December 23, 2017 at 7:00 PM ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse
by Wheat Hotchkiss
Pacers.com Writer/Editor
@Wheat_Hotchkiss

Matchup

Christmas is just a few days away and the Pacers have one more test before they can unwrap their presents. Indiana (18-14) hosts Brooklyn (12-19) on Saturday night at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Though most preseason predictions had this year's Pacers team destined for the lottery, we're now over two months into the season and it's clear that the Pacers are a legitimate playoff contender.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the Pacers are alone in fourth place in the Eastern Conference. They're 10-7 at home, 8-7 on the road, and 13-8 in conference games. Victor Oladipo ranks 10th in the NBA in scoring at 24.8 points per game and has emerged as a strong contender for both an All-Star bid and Most Improved Player honors.

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For Pacers fans, the team's strong performance has to qualify as a wonderful Christmas gift. And on paper, the Pacers' schedule for the rest of 2017 sets them up for more success.

Counting their 105-95 win in Atlanta on Wednesday, four of the Pacers' last six games in the calendar year are against teams well below .500.

Indiana and Brooklyn will meet on Saturday for the third time this season and the second time in less than a week. The Pacers already handled the Nets on Opening Night and won in Brooklyn on Sunday.

Projected Starters

Pacers: PG - Darren Collison, SG - Victor Oladipo, SF - Bojan Bogdanovic, PF - Thaddeus Young, C - Myles Turner
Nets: PG - Spencer Dinwiddie, SG - Allen Crabbe, SF - Rondae Hollis-Jefferson, PF - DeMarre Carroll, C - Tyler Zeller

Injury Report

Pacers: Glenn Robinson III - out (left ankle surgery rehabilitation), Edmond Sumner - out (left knee surgery rehabilitation)

Hawks: Isaiah Whitehead - not with team (NBA G League assignment), D'Angelo Russell - out (left knee surgery), Jeremy Lin - out (ruptured patella tendon, right knee)

Last Meeting

December 17, 2017: Victor Oladipo scored 26 points on 9-of-14 shooting to lead five Pacers players in double figures in a 109-97 win at the Barclays Center.

The Pacers got strong contributions from their bench in the victory. Domantas Sabonis tallied 17 points and eight rebounds, while Cory Joseph added 15 points on 5-of-7 shooting, six rebounds, and three assists.

Allen Crabbe led the Nets with 17 points. Quincy Acy, Joe Harris, and Caris LeVert each scored 14 points in the loss.

Noteworthy

  • Indiana has a 102-72 lead in the all-time series with the Nets, including a 62-25 record in games played in Indianapolis.
  • The Pacers have won five straight and 13 of their last 17 regular season games against Brooklyn.
  • Cory Joseph needs nine assists to reach 1,000 in his career.

Tickets

The Pacers return to Bankers Life Fieldhouse to host the Nets on Saturday, Dec. 23 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), Slick Leonard (analyst), 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

State Icon Hooded Fleece - $35. The Game Night Special can be purchased at the Pacers Team Store on game day.