Pacers at Nuggets

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Game Preview: Pacers at Nuggets

Tuesday, April 3, 2018 at 9:00 PM ET at Pepsi Center
by Wheat Hotchkiss
Pacers.com Writer/Editor
@Wheat_Hotchkiss

Matchup

Riding high after yet another road win, the Pacers (46-31) will attempt to sweep their four-game Western Conference road trip on Tuesday, when they square off against the Nuggets (42-35) in Denver.

The Pacers have won five straight games overall, including three consecutive road contests, picking up wins at Golden State, Sacramento, and the Clippers. Indiana has not swept a road trip of four games or more since March 27 - April 1, 2013 (also a four-game trip).

Pacers All-Star guard Victor Oladipo has been brilliant over the course of this trip. Over the past three wins, Oladipo has averaged 26.0 points, 6.7 assists, 5.0 rebounds, and 3.7 steals while going 29-for-43 from the field (67.4 percent) and 7-for-16 from 3-point range (43.8 percent).

PLAYOFF PICTURE: Track the Pacers' Playoff Push »

While Tuesday's game means a lot for the Pacers, who are still chasing Cleveland and Philadelphia in the race for homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs, it is even more important to the Nuggets.

Denver is currently in ninth place in the Western Conference, a game back of both Minnesota and New Orleans in the loss column. But because they play the Timberwolves twice over their final five games, the Nuggets control their own destiny to make the playoffs, meaning that if they win all of their remaining games, they will be guaranteed a spot in the postseason.

The Nuggets also have some momentum on their side after Sunday's overtime win over Milwaukee, where they pulled off a wild rally from eight points down in the final minute of regulation to force the extra period, then gutted out the win in the extra session.

Projected Starters

Pacers: PG - Darren Collison, SG - Victor Oladipo, SF - Bojan Bogdanovic, PF - Thaddeus Young, C - Myles Turner
Nuggets: PG - Jamal Murray, SG - Will Barton, SF - Torrey Craig, PF - Paul Millsap, C - Nikola Jokic

Injury Report

Pacers: None

Nuggets: Wilson Chandler – questionable (nasal fracture), Gary Harris – out (right knee sprain/strain), Tyler Lydon – out (left knee surgery)

Last Meeting

December 10, 2017: Victor Oladipo put together arguably his best performance of the season, scoring a career-high 47 points to go along with seven rebounds and six assists to lead Indiana to a 126-116 overtime win over the Denver Nuggets at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

"Y'all might be surprised, but I put in the work," Oladipo said after the win. "I work every day. I have no limit to how hard I work. I'm trying to be great. There's no in between and I can't settle for anything less."

Indiana trailed by as many as 19 points in the game and by eight with under four minutes left in regulation, but rallied to force overtime when Thaddeus Young put back an Oladipo miss to tie the game at 114 with 5.5 seconds to play.

Young (18 points and six boards), Domantas Sabonis (14 points), and Lance Stephenson (12 points, six rebounds, and six assists) also scored in double figures for Indiana.

Trey Lyles scored 15 of his team-high 25 points for Denver in the fourth quarter. Will Barton added 21 points, six rebounds, and nine assists, while Gary Harris also scored 21.

Noteworthy

  • With a win on Tuesday, the Pacers would sweep the season series with the Nuggets for the first time since the 2003-04 season.
  • The Pacers have dropped their last seven games in Denver. Their last win at the Pepsi Center came on Dec. 27, 2007.
  • Oladipo has had at least one steal in 60 consecutive games, the sixth-longest streak in NBA history. If he records a steal in each of Indiana's last five regular season games, he will pass Gary Payton (63 straight games) and Mike Conley (64) and move into fourth place.

Tickets

Following a four-game road trip, the Pacers return to Bankers Life Fieldhouse to host the Golden State Warriors on Thursday, April 5 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)

Away Game Night Special

Indy Flex-Fit Hat - $15. Game Night Specials can be purchased online the day of each away game from 10:00 AM - Midnight. Order Online »