Indiana Pacers at Oklahoma City Thunder Preview
The Indiana Pacers have officially clinched a playoff position and the Oklahoma City Thunder seem just days away from doing the same, but the teams will meet tonight to settle the score when it comes to their regular season series.
The Pacers are currently in fourth place in the Eastern Conference with a 45-29 record. They won their last game and are 4-6 in their last 10, but the fact they are in the top four in the East after losing their star player, Victor Oladipo, says a ton about coach Nate McMillan and the players. Oklahoma City, who will be at home tonight, is seventh in the West with a 43-31 record, just a half-game ahead of the San Antonio Spurs and one game behind the Utah Jazz. OKC lost their last game and are also 4-6 in their last 10.
In their last meeting, which was just on March 14, the Pacers walked away with the win as Domantas Sabonis led the way with 26 points and seven rebounds. Russell Westbrook had a triple-double, and former Pacer Paul George had 36 points for the Thunder.
Time: 8:00pm ET
Arena: Chesapeake Energy Arena, Oklahoma City, OK
Indiana Pacers Starting Lineup
While the Indiana Pacers are in much better shape than most expected them to be in after the Oladipo injury, they’re also quite not peaking in time for the playoffs. They won just one of their previous five games and have just eight games left to gain some momentum in time for the postseason.
“We need to keep playing it out and just keep working our way into playoff shape,” Indiana center Myles Turner said. “We’ve got a good thing going right now. We’re still fighting for something.”
The Pacers have a good start to build off of as they beat the Western Conference’s second place team, the Denver Nuggets, by a whopping 36 points on Sunday night. The Pacers were dominant in the final three quarters as they built up a big lead and cruised to the win.
Bojan Bogdanovic came up big with 35 points in the Pacers win, with Turner adding 17 points and 11 rebounds. Domantas Sabonis came off the bench for 15 points and 13 rebounds, and Tyreke Evans and Aaron Holiday had 11 points apiece.
Oklahoma City Thunder Starting Lineup
After a big win over the Toronto Raptors on Friday, the Thunder had a letdown loss on Monday night against the Memphis Grizzlies 103-115.
“If you’re going to be a great team,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan said, “the thing that doesn’t allow greatness is inconsistency.”
The Thunder had a hard time containing Grizzlies forward Bruno Caboclo, who scored 24 points and has played well for the Grizzlies.
The Thunder had four players score in double figures as starters Jerami Grant and Steven Adams combined for just 9 points. Grant has been inconsistent from game-to-game lately and in the games where he does not provide much scoring, the Thunder have struggled.
Paul George led OKC with 30 points and 12 rebounds and Dennis Schroeder came off the bench for 25 points. Russell Westbrook didn’t have the type of game that has become the norm for him lately. He finished with 16 points, seven assists, and five rebounds.
Indiana Pacers at Oklahoma City Thunder Betting Odds
The Oklahoma City Thunder are six-point favorites to win tonight’s game at home. They are 23-12 at home and 32-21 as the favorite. The Pacers are 17-20 on the road and 11-19 as the underdog.
The over/under is 216 points and the Thunder are -230 on the moneyline.
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