The Indiana Pacers snapped a four-game losing streak in emphatic fashion on Friday night in Chicago. But if the Pacers (6-7) want to put together a winning streak, they will have to knock off one of the NBA’s best teams on Sunday evening, when James Harden and the Houston Rockets (9-3) make their annual visit to Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
The Pacers put together a complete game in their 105-87 victory over the Bulls on Friday.
Leading scorer Victor Oladipo — who had shot just 35.6 percent over his previous three contests — found his groove again, racking up 25 points on 11-of-20 shooting to go along with six rebounds and six assists.
He got plenty of help, especially from Bojan Bogdanovic, who went 6-for-9 from 3-point range en route to 22 points and seven rebounds. Prior to Friday, the Croatian sharpshooter had not made more than three 3-pointers in any of his first 12 games with the Pacers.
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But the biggest difference on Friday was on the defensive end. After allowing their opponents to shoot 50 percent or better in five straight contests, the Blue & Gold held the Bulls to a .398 field goal percentage in their skid-snapping win.
While the win was encouraging, the Bulls are just 2-8 on the season. Indiana should face a much stiffer test on Sunday against the Rockets, who have one of the best offenses in the NBA. Houston ranks second in the NBA in offensive rating at 109.3 points per 100 possessions and hoists nearly 45 3-pointers a night, over 10 more per game than the next-closest team (Golden State).
Leading the Houston attack is Harden, a perennial MVP candidate, who currently ranks third in the league in both scoring (29.9 points per game) and assists (10.0 per contest).
Pacers: PG – Darren Collison, SG – Victor Oladipo, SF – Bojan Bogdanovic, PF – Thaddeus Young, C – Myles Turner
Rockets: PG – James Harden, SG – Eric Gordon, SF – Trevor Ariza, PF – Ryan Anderson, C – Clint Capela
Pacers: Glenn Robinson III – out (left ankle surgery rehabilitation), Edmond Sumner – out (left knee surgery rehabilitation)
Rockets: Luc Mbah a Moute – questionable (left knee contusion), Chris Paul – out (left knee injury)
February 27, 2017: The Pacers clawed back from a 17-point first half deficit to knock off the Rockets, 117-108, on the second stop of a difficult five-game road trip.
Nursing a two-point lead in the final minute, Indiana executed a beautiful baseline out-of-bounds play, with Monta Ellis inbounding to Paul George, who one-touched a pass to an open C.J. Miles in the right corner for a three with 40 seconds to play.
James Harden missed a quick three on the other end and the Pacers hit their free throws down the stretch to seal the victory.
Jeff Teague led the Pacers with 25 points, eight rebounds, and six assists. Rodney Stuckey added 17 points off the bench, 11 of them coming after halftime.
Lou Williams led Houston with 28 points off the bench, going 5-for-10 from 3-point range. Harden added 25 points and 12 assists, but was just 5-for-17 from the field and 1-for-9 from beyond the arc.
- The Pacers swept the season series with the Rockets last season and have won three straight games against Houston overall.
- Indiana is 23-21 all-time against the Rockets in games played in Indianapolis.
- Pacers point guard Darren Collison and forward Luc Mbah a Moute were teammates at UCLA from 2005-08.
Good seats remain for the Pacers’ game against James Harden and the Houston Rockets on Sunday, Nov. 12 at 6:00 PM ET at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Find Tickets »
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.
Hoops for Troops Week
As part of Hoops for Troops Week and in recognition of Veterans Day, the Pacers will have a special halftime ceremony where the franchise will recognize military veterans on the court and dedicate an honorary POW/MIA chair.
Home Court Gift Shop Game Night Special
Hoops for Troops Long Sleeve T-Shirt – $16. Game Night Specials can be purchased online the day of each away game from 10:00 AM – Midnight. Order Online »
Construction Note: The city’s department of public works is replacing the sidewalk on Pennsylvania Street from just north of Georgia Street to Bankers Life Court. Portions of the sidewalk may be closed, but pedestrians should still have access to the Pennsylvania Street entrance of Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
Away Game Night Special
Pacers Flag Hat – $12. Game Night Specials can be purchased online the day of each away game from 10:00 AM – Midnight. Order Online »–>