Thursday night always seems to be a big night when it comes to NBA action, and there is a huge showdown in the Eastern Conference set to take place. The Indiana Pacers are set to visit the New York Knicks for a matchup of two playoff contenders.
Indiana has been playing some great basketball of late, and they have actually been a surprising team all season long. The Pacers are bringing a record of 27-21 into this game, and they made some aggressive moves at the Trade Deadline.
New York is near the top of the Eastern Conference this season as they have gone 31-17 through the first 48 games. The Knicks have rattled off eight straight wins, and they will try to stay red-hot against a conference rival.
The New York Knicks are coming into this game as a 3.5-point betting favorite over the Indiana Pacers on Thursday night.
Pacers Playing With Pace
The Indiana Pacers are the highest scoring team in the NBA so far this season as they are averaging over 124 points per game this season. Indiana is making nearly 14 three-point shots per game, and they have the ability to overwhelm an opponent.
Tyrese Haliburton is setting the tone for the Pacers this season as he is scoring over 23 points per game so far this season. Haliburton has been missing some games lately due to injury, but he will be looking to put on a show at Madison Square Garden.
Indiana did just allow 129 points to the Boston Celtics in their most recent game, and that has been consistent theme this season. The Pacers are going to need to play better defense if they want to become a serious playoff contender.
Knicks Can Be Tough
Toughness is not something that many teams have anymore in the NBA, but that is a word that would be used to describe this team. New York is scoring 115.4 points per game this season, but they have been setting the tone on defense.
Jalen Brunson is scoring 26.8 points per game this season to lead the way for this team, and he is also averaging 6.5 assists per game. Julius Randle is not expected to play in this game, and that will create some issues.
Look for New York to try to slow down the tempo in this game as they don’t want this game to turn into a shootout. Playing at home should allow the Knicks to set the tone against the Pacers in this matchup.
Knicks Get Past Pacers
The Indiana Pacers present some unique challenges to opponents, especially when Haliburton is shooting the ball well from deep. Indiana is going to have to make shots to keep this game close, but their defense will be an issue.
New York has gotten great guard play all season long, and they are a team that is not fun to contend with. This Knicks team should be able to score points at will in this game, and eventually they are going to pull away.
Bet the New York Knicks -3.5 as they take care of business and roll to a big win over the Indiana Pacers on Thursday night.