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Game Preview: Pacers at Suns

Matchup

After a historically dominant road win in Utah, the Pacers (12-8) will try to start their four-game Western Conference road trip with two wins in as many nights on Tuesday evening in Phoenix.

Indiana rolled to a 121-88 win over the Jazz on Monday, their first road win by 30 points or more in just under 22 years. The Blue & Gold had seven players score in double figures in the win, including Doug McDermott with a season-best 21 points on 8-of-13 shooting.

McDermott figured to be an important piece off the bench for the Pacers this season after signing a three-year contract this summer, but he was an afterthought for most of the first quarter of the season. He entered Monday shooting a respectable 37.7 percent from 3-point range, but averaging just 5.7 points over 19 contests, his lowest scoring average since his rookie season with Chicago in 2014-15.

The Pacers are hoping McDermott's performance on Monday was the start of a larger breakthrough. With All-Star guard Victor Oladipo nursing a sore right knee that has forced him to miss the last four contests, the Pacers need all the offense they can get to pick up the slack in Oladipo's absence.

The Suns have the worst record in the Western Conference and are just 4-15 on the year, though they are more competitive at home (3-6) than on the road (1-9). Phoenix is in rebuilding mode under first year coach Igor Kokoškov, but has the makings of potentially one of the league's best inside-out tandems.

22-year-old guard Devin Booker is making a run at his first All-Star selection in his fourth NBA season. Booker entered Monday tied for 10th in the NBA in scoring at 24.9 points per game and 11th in assists (7.1 per contest).

Booker has a new running mate in 7-1 center Deandre Ayton, the first overall pick in last year's draft. Ayton has lived up to expectations so far, averaging 16.9 points on 62.4 percent shooting and 10.4 rebounds over his first 19 NBA games.

Projected Starters

Darren Collison

Darren Collison

Tyreke Evans

Tyreke Evans

Bojan Bogdanovic

Bojan Bogdanovic

Thaddeus Young

Thaddeus Young

Myles Turner

Myles Turner

Devin Booker

Devin Booker

Mikal Bridges

Mikal Bridges

Trevor Ariza

Trevor Ariza

T.J. Warren

T.J. Warren

Deandre Ayton

Deandre Ayton

Pacers: PG - Darren Collison, SG - Tyreke Evans, SF - Bojan Bogdanovic, PF - Thaddeus Young, C - Myles Turner
Suns: PG - Devin Booker, SG - Mikal Bridges, SF - Trevor Ariza, PF - T.J. Warren, C - Deandre Ayton

Injury Report

Pacers: Victor Oladipo - questionable (sore right knee)

Suns: None

Last Meeting

January 24, 2018: The Pacers dismantled the Suns at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, 116-101. Victor Oladipo led all scorers with 21 points and also tallied nine rebounds, four assists, and three steals to lead Indiana to victory.

Domantas Sabonis added 19 points and eight rebounds, while Bojan Bogdanovic chipped in 17 points and seven boards.

Josh Jackson led Phoenix with 20 points on 7-of-11 shooting. Devin Booker added 19 points, six rebounds, and four assists in the loss.

Noteworthy

  • The Pacers are 39-48 all-time against the Suns, including a 15-28 record in Phoenix.
  • Indiana has swept the season series with the Suns in two of the last three seasons.
  • The Pacers are a perfect 3-0 this season when playing on the second night of a back-to-back, but all three of those games were at home.
  • Pacers forward Thaddeus Young is 21 rebounds shy of 5,000 for his career.

Tickets

After a four-game road trip, the Pacers return to Bankers Life Fieldhouse to host the Chicago Bulls on Tuesday, Dec. 4 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)