Opponent: Indiana Pacers
Location: Barclays Center
Time: 7:30 PM
Watch: YES Network, Fox Sports GO app
The Nets will try to stop yet another lengthy losing streak tonight against the Indiana Pacers. The close losses have become routine, and the Nets’ 105-100 loss on Monday night was their fourth straight and 14th out of their last 16 games. On Monday, Pistons center Andre Drummond scored 21 points and ripped down 18 rebounds(7 offensive) to lead the visiting team to a 28-7 edge in second chance points. The 19-7 edge in offensive boards helped the Pistons stay in the game, but their late demise came at the hands of Piston point guard Reggie Jackson, who scored 7 points and dished out a key assist in a 10-2 run that ended the game.
The Pacers, currently eighth in the Eastern Conference standings, are also coming off a tough home loss on Monday to the Cleveland Cavaliers, 111-106 in overtime. After a spirited second-half rally, the Pacers fell short in the final period thanks to eight points from Kyrie Irving (25 points, 7 assists). George Hill led the Pacers with 23 points but the duo of Monta Ellis and Paul George combined to shoot just 8-for-34 (23.5 percent) with 11 turnovers.
“There are plenty of positives tonight. We are an improving team,” head coach Frank Vogel said. “We’ve changed, we’re evolving and we’ve got great promise to have a strong second half of the season. It’s frustrating too, but I’m encouraged. Our two best scorers had off shooting nights and we had a chance to beat the best team in the East.”
Tonight will be the second of four meetings between the Nets and Pacers. On December 18th, the Pacers outscored the Nets 32-20 in the fourth quarter to beat the Nets 104-97 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis. Both teams shot poorly from the field, but the Pacers notched a 42-32 edge on the boards and a 45-23 edge on bench points, led by Jordan Hill’s 14 points and 11 rebounds.
Jarrett Jack had one his best games of his shortened season for the Nets with 26 points, nine rebounds, six assists, three steals, and two blocks.
What to watch for: SMOTHERED CHICKEN!
Through the first half of the season, rookie center Myles Turner played sparingly off the bench and missed 21 games with a thumb injury. Lately, he’s been a force! In the past 8 games, the 6’11”, 11th overall pick out of Texas has averaged 17.5 points, 7.0 rebounds, 2.8 blocks, while shooting 56 percent from the field. Starting center Ian Mahinmi (lower back injury) missed the past two games and will not play tonight; Turner has started in his place. Coach Vogel will have some lineup juggling to do when Mahinmi finally returns.