Indiana (26-23) at Atlanta (29-22)
When: Friday, February 5th 2016
Where: Philips Arena, Atlanta, GA
Time: 7:05 ET | TV: ESPN
Two teams looking for more consistency square off in Atlanta as the Hawks host the Indiana Pacers for the first time this season. The Pacers took the first two meetings of the year at home after dropping all three games to the Hawks last season. Indiana had dropped six of seven games before beating Atlanta 111-92 just over a week ago. Monta Ellis led all scorers with 25 in that game and went 5-of-7 from three-point land. As a team, the Pacers were 9-of-15 from beyond the arc while holding Atlanta to 7-of-28. The Pacers dominated the boards that night outrebounding Atlanta 49-32. The lone loss in Indiana’s recent streak was a 111-106 overtime loss to East-leader Cleveland. They bounced back two nights later at won at Brooklyn 114-100. The bench saw a lot of minutes in the blowout win and C.J. Miles led the Pacers with 27 points in just 21 minutes. Miles had scored 31 points combined in the previous seven games. Indiana is tied with Detroit for the 7th and 8th seeds in the East, but are just two games back of Atlanta for the three-seed.
Atlanta had lost three in a row including the Indiana game, but have now won two straight and hope to keep the momentum going tonight. The latest win came against Philadelphia in which eight players scored in double-figures including five players off the bench. Six bench players logged at least 10 minutes with Tim Hardaway, Jr. leading the way with 13 points, 7 rebounds, and 4 assists in 25+ minutes. Kyle Korver broke out of a shooting slump to drain 4-of-7 three-pointers in 19 minutes of action. The veteran shot 45% or better from long-range the previous three seasons, but has seen his percentage dip to just 37.8 this season. He is 1-for-15 from beyond the arc in the two meetings with Indiana this year. Backup center Tiago Splitter has missed the past two games with a hip injury and is listed as questionable for tonight. Atlanta has a half game lead over Miami in the Southeast Division entering Friday’s play.
I’ll have to take the points with these two inconsistent teams. Both should be rested as they came off blowout wins and got to rest the starters. Look for Indiana to shut down Atlanta’s three-point shooting and rule the boards just like they did last Thursday.
Tonight’s Fantasy Picks: Jeff Teague
Pick: Pacers +5