NBA Basketball

119
Final-OT 1 2 3 4 OT Tot
Indiana 18 36 21 30 14 119
Chicago 30 28 20 27 11 116
116
5:00 PM PT6:00 PM MT7:00 PM CT8:00 PM ET1:00 GMT9:00 6:00 PM MST8:00 PM EST5:00 UAE (+1)02:0020:00 ET7:00 PM CTNaN:� , January 4, 2019
United Center, Chicago, Illinois  Attendance: 21,284

Pacers-Bulls Preview

According to STATS
According to STATS

Indiana Pacers at Chicago Bulls

  1. The Pacers have won both matchups against the Bulls this season, and six of seven overall against Chicago. Indiana has won two of its last three games played in Chicago, coming directly after losing eight of nine at the United Center.
  2. Indiana has won five games in a row and the team's 12-3 (.800) record since December 1 leads the NBA over that time. Overall, Indiana has allowed the fewest points per game (101.1) of any team this season.
  3. The Bulls have dropped three of four, most recently losing, 112-84, against the Magic. Chicago has eight losses this season by 25 points or more, most in the NBA.
  4. The Pacers have won 11 games in a row when scoring at least 100 points, and the team's 22-5 (.815) record overall this season when scoring 100+ points is the best in the NBA. During their current five-game winning streak, Indiana has averaged 117.8 points on 52.5 percent shooting from the field.
  5. Bojan Bogdanovic is shooting 51.0 percent overall and 45.7 percent from three-point range this season, good for an effective field-goal percentage of 60.0. Among non-centers with at least 400 field-goal attempts this season, Bogdanovic's effective field-goal percentage trails only Stephen Curry (61.3 eFG%).
  6. Since returning from injury on December 1, Lauri Markkanen has been responsible for 32.8 percent of the Bulls' made three-pointers. Over that time, only Paul George (36.8 percent), Stephen Curry (36.4 percent) and James Harden (35.3 percent) have been responsible for a higher percentage of their respective team's three-point makes.

The Indiana Pacers will go for their sixth win in a row when they visit the Chicago Bulls on Friday night.

The recent hot streak vaulted Indiana (25-12) to third place in the Eastern Conference behind only the Milwaukee Bucks and Toronto Raptors. The Pacers have won five straight, 12 of 14 and 17 of 23.

Meanwhile, Chicago (10-28) is headed in the opposite direction. The Bulls already have endured five losing streaks of at least three games this season, and they will try to avoid their sixth three-game skid with a win against the Pacers.

The Pacers expect to have center Myles Turner on the court despite the fact that he broke his nose Monday in a collision with Atlanta Hawks forward-center John Collins. Turner likely will wear a face mask for the foreseeable future but expressed gratitude that his injury was not more serious.

A three-day break between games gave Turner extra time for the soreness to diminish. The 22-year-old Texas product is averaging 13.1 points, 7.3 rebounds and 2.9 blocks per game in his fourth season with Indiana.

"I've had enough concussions," Turner said in comments published by the Indianapolis Star. "I don't want any more. I was a little headache-y at first but that was just from the initial blow. Past two days, no signs of a concussion."

On the opposite bench, one of the top storylines entering the game will focus on Bulls rookie Wendell Carter's playing time. Carter spent the final 20 minutes watching from the bench on Wednesday as the Orlando Magic clobbered the Bulls 112-84.

The 19-year-old Carter was the Bulls' first-round pick (No. 7 overall) this summer and has showed potential to be a core player going forward with averages of 10.4 points, 6.9 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game in 38 starts. His limited use prompted questions from media members and fans alike about how sitting rather than playing could accelerate his development.

"Well, sometimes you learn by sitting, too," Bulls head coach Jim Boylen told reporters. "He sees what's going on in the game. Maybe you have some introspection. Maybe you realize, 'I've got to play my minutes better when I'm out there.'"

The Bulls will have a couple new faces, although it's uncertain whether they will play Friday after the team pulled the trigger by reportedly trading shooting guard Justin Holiday to Memphis for shooting guards MarShon Brooks and Wayne Selden, along with two second-round picks.

Pacers guard Victor Oladipo will look to continue his career success against the Bulls. He has averaged 20.1 points per game versus Chicago, which marks his third-best average against any opponent behind Oklahoma City (23.3) and Orlando (20.8).

Injuries sidelined Oladipo for 11 games earlier this season, but he has played the past 10 in a row.

"Any given night, any guy can step up and be ready to play," Pacers forward Thaddeus Young said to the Indianapolis Star. "We've always used a 'next man up' mentality when somebody's not feeling good or somebody's not doing well."

This is the third of four regular-season meetings between the teams. Indiana is 2-0 on the season series so far after posting a 107-105 win in Chicago on Nov. 2 and a 96-90 win in Indianapolis on Dec. 4, which marked Boylen's head-coaching debut.

Updated January 3, 2019

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