Indiana Pacers (2-1)
Philadelphia 76ers (0-4)
TV: Comcast SportsNet, NBA League Pass Channel 5
Radio: 610 WIP
Tip Time: 7:00 Eastern
Location: Wells Fargo Center
Vegas Line: 2.5 (Pacers)
Previous Meeting: Pacers 99 - Sixers 86
Mortal Enemies of the Night: Indy Cornrows
Pacers vs 76ers coverage
That was a heartbreaker last night wasn't it? Luckily for the Sixers, there isn't a long waiting period between games, as they get right back into the swing of things against the a team they haven't seen in four
months weeks days: the Indiana Pacers.
It seems like it was just yesterday (okay four days ago) when Lou Williams started the game hitting his first seven shots, the Sixers lost any control they may have had by committing countless third quarter turnovers and offensive fouls, and Paul George was hitting threes to put the seal on a Pacers win.
Coming into round two of this heavyweight fight, the Sixers are on the second leg of a back-to-back while the Pacers have been maxin-and-relaxin (frisbee golf was involved me thinks), not having played since that game Saturday. The Sixers might be a little gassed given the circumstances they went through last night. Jrue Holiday, Andre Iguodala, Elton Brand, and Lou Williams all played 30+ minutes, with Evan Turner right on the cusp at 27.
Looking back at the previous meeting (Philly Arena - check it out!), the most successful lineup that played significant minutes together was a combination of Jrue, Andre, Turner, Thad, and Brand. During that stretch, despite the size differential, Elton did a surprisingly decent job defending the lane against Pacers big man Roy Hibbert. I highly doubt we'll see a starting lineup of those five, but I absolutely look for them to play together for some vital stretches.
The biggest factor that will decide between a win or a loss, for me, is the turnover battle. On Saturday, the Sixers did a nice job forcing 18 Pacer turnovers but they committed 19 on their own. Although it's a ridiculously small sample size, the Sixers are coming in 24th in league in turnovers per game (1st allowing the least, 30th allowing the most). If the Sixers can get below 14 turnovers tonight, they should come away with the victory.
Now I realize a lot of other factors will come into play such as keeping Collison, Granger, and Hibbert in check, not getting killed on the glass, getting to the basket, etc. but turnovers give the opposition extra possessions, extra possessions lead to extra opportunities, and extra opportunities lead to more points on the board (what a novel concept!). Assuming all other factors play out as they have been, a low turnover total should amount to a victory or at least a shot at one.
Game starts at 7:00 friends. Thread it up. GO SIXERS!
Let's get victory number one...