- THE MATCHUP: Philadelphia 76ers at Indiana Pacers
- WHEN IS IT: Monday, January 13, 7:00 PM ET
- THE LOCATION: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, IN
- TELEVISION: Fox Sports Indiana, NBC Sports Philadelphia Plus
For the Philadelphia 76ers this season, life on the road hasn’t been the best. Away from Philadelphia, the Sixers are currently on a five-game losing streak, and out of 20 games total in the 2019-20 campaign, they’ve lost 13 of those contests.
On Monday night, Philly hopes to switch up that narrative when their current two-game road trip ends in Indianapolis against the Indiana Pacers.
Statistical Comparison: Philadelphia 76ers vs. Indiana Pacers
- Philadelphia 76ers: 109.3 PPG
- Indiana Pacers: 109.6 PPG
Field Goal Percentage
- Philadelphia 76ers: 46.9 FG%
- Indiana Pacers: 47.1 FG%
- Philadelphia 76ers: 26.5 APG
- Indiana Pacers: 25.9 APG
- Philadelphia 76ers: 105.8 PA
- Indiana Pacers: 106.5 PA
- Philadelphia 76ers: 5.6 BLK
- Indiana Pacers: 5.1 BLK
- Philadelphia 76ers: 8.3 STL
- Indiana Pacers: 6.9 STL
- Philadelphia 76ers: 46.0 RPG
- Indiana Pacers: 43.4 RPG
- Philadelphia 76ers: L1
- Indiana Pacers: W1
Last 10 Games
- Philadelphia 76ers: 5-5
- Indiana Pacers: 4-6
Last Five Games
- Philadelphia 76ers: at Dallas Mavericks (L 109-91), vs. Boston Celtics (W 109-98), vs. Oklahoma City Thunder (W 120-113), at Houston Rockets (L 118-108), at Indiana Pacers (L 115-97)
- Indiana Pacers: at Chicago Bulls (W 116-105), vs. Miami Heat (L 122-108), at Charlotte Hornets (W 115-104), at Atlanta Hawks (L 116-111), vs. Denver Nuggets (L 124-116)
- Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers): 23.4 PPG, 47.2 FG%, 83.7 FT%
- Domantas Sabonis (Indiana Pacers): 18.0 PPG, 52.8 FG%, 72.6 FT%
- Joel Embiid (Philadelphia 76ers): 12.3 RPG, 9.8 DRPG, 2.5 ORPG
- Domantas Sabonis (Indiana Pacers): 13.1 RPG, 9.7 DRPG, 3.3 ORPG
- Ben Simmons (Philadelphia 76ers): 8.5 APG, 3.5 TOPG, 35.5 MPG
- T.J. McConnell (Indiana Pacers): 5.2 APG, 1.5 TOPG, 18.9 MPG
Overall, the 76ers have suffered five losses in their last seven games, with their most recent defeat coming in Dallas against the Mavericks. The third quarter of that contest would absolutely kill Philadelphia, who would play pretty dismal in that stanza of the game. Shooting from the three-point line, the Sixers would only hit 23.8% of their shots, going just 5-of-21 from behind the arc. In total in the third, Philly was outscored by the Mavs, 109-91, to receive the blowout defeat.
“All throughout the game we had good looks,” Philadelphia 76ers forward Tobias Harris would tell the media. “The third quarter, we missed a bunch in a row. They were able to get out, get looks up and, at the same time, get to the free-throw line.
“We made a lot of mental mistakes on the defensive end, especially in the third quarter, that turned for them, really changed the game.”
Currently being forced to step it up in Joel Embiid’s absence, Ben Simmons would record his 20th double-double of the season after putting together a stat line of 11 points and 11 assists.
On Friday, Embiid would undergo surgery due to his torn radial collateral ligament, placed on his left hand’s ring finger. This season, the two-time All-Star leads the Philadelphia 76ers in both scoring and rebounding, averaging a double-double in the process at 23.4 points-per-game and 12.3 rebounds-per-game — he will be re-evaluated in two weeks.
- Joel Embiid: Out (Finger)
- Domantas Sabonis: Questionable (Knee)
- Malcolm Brogdon: Questionable (Illness)
- Victor Oladipo: Out (Knee)
- Naz Mitrou-Long: Out (Ankle)
On New Year’s Eve, the 76ers would square off against the Pacers then too, with Embiid also being out for that matchup in Indianapolis. Indiana would score the route win, 115-97.
In that game, Indiana Pacers center Domantas Sabonis would rack up 23 points, scoring 11 of them in the third quarter — he would also finish the contest with 10 rebounds and five assists, securing a double-double. With that being said, Sabonis’ momentum has slowed down a bit with the big-man expected to get an MRI due to his recovering left knee.
On Friday against the Chicago Bulls, Myles Turner would step up his game to give the Pacers the 116-105 victory, putting up season highs in both scoring and on the glass — he would end the night with a double-double himself with 27 points and 14 rebounds.
“I thought we did a good job of ‘next man up’ with Domas not playing tonight,” Indiana Pacers head coach Nate McMillan stated. “Myles was involved a lot more because of the absence of Domas. He was at the 5 position and he did a good job making plays. He took the shot when it was there. Really got us off to a good start and had an impact on this game at both ends of the floor.”
Against the Bulls, Indiana was incredible in the shooting department, hitting 57.1% of their shots to achieve their second victory in three games. A major reason for the excellent shooting was due to the bench play of the Pacers, which was strong against Chicago and has been the entire season.
“Especially late in the game, guys are confident, knocked down some big shots,” Turner said. “We faced a lot of adversity, with some guys being out. Guys stepped to the plate and made it happen.”
The key figure off of the bench for Indiana was Aaron Holiday, who would put up 19 points against the Bulls hitting eight of his nine shots — this would be his highest scoring mark since December 28 against the New Orleans Pelicans. Against Philadelphia twice this season, Holiday has altogether scored nine points, and has done so on 4-of-11 shooting.
Coming into the game on Monday, the Pacers have lost two in a row at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Before that, they would win 15 out of 18 contests at home to begin the season.
So, Who’s Going to Win?
When it comes to matchups, this is definitely one of the most balanced ones of Monday night, if not the most. However, despite the Indiana Pacers being at home, it should be the Philadelphia 76ers who are the favorites to win — as they were by -1.5 points in the betting odds on Sunday. (Here on gameday, the Pacers have moved into the favorite position at -2 points.)
Throughout the season, the Pacers have been dealing with injuries and absences that are key to the roster, and none of that has changed much here in mid-January. Tonight against the 76ers, Malcolm Brogdon will most likely be out of action because of an illness, so for Indiana: “When it rains, it pours.”
With that being said, Philadelphia are dealing with injuries themselves, most likely being without their star and big-man Joel Embiid. So here’s what this game comes down to the most: Who is the more motivated team to win?
For the Sixers, they’ll be motivated to get back on the right track for two reasons: 1. As previously mentioned, they want to change the narrative about them being terrible on the road. And 2. They got flat out embarrassed by the Dallas Mavericks in their last game. Philadelphia knows they desperately need to get things together as the playoffs get closer and closer, against a banged-up Indiana is a perfect opportunity to do so. As far as the Pacers are concerned, they’ve lost two consecutive games on their homecourt, while overall, they’ve lost three out of their last five games. You see what I mean? There’s plenty of motivation for both of these clubs to win.
The way I’m seeing it, the Philadelphia 76ers should be able to control the pace tonight against the Indiana Pacers. As a result, that should give them the much-needed win that they very much desire. The Sixers are shorthanded, but Indiana is the more suffering of the two when it comes to injuries/absences. Give me Philadelphia for the victory tonight.
BETTING PREDICTION: Philadelphia 76ers 108, Indiana Pacers 107