COACHING CHANGES EXPANDED MATCHUPS DEPTH CHARTS CURRENT ODDS
NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, January 4th (All times Eastern)
New Orleans Pelicans (15-16) at Indiana Pacers (25-6), 7 p.m.
(SportsNetwork.com) - The Indiana Pacers had a five-game winning streak snapped last time out, so they'll try to reclaim some momentum Saturday night when they host the New Orleans Pelicans.
On Wednesday, the Pacers fell to the suddenly hot Toronto Raptors, 95-82. Indiana has lost back-to-back games only once this season and will try to avoid the same fate Saturday.
Roy Hibbert scored 16 points and Paul George added 12 points and eight rebounds for the Pacers, who hadn't lost since Dec. 18 at Miami.
Indiana committed a season-high 23 turnovers in the loss to the Raptors.
"We beat ourselves," Hibbert said. "We turned the ball over, we weren't doing our defensive assignments. They were the better team tonight, I can honestly say that."
Danny Granger was the only other Pacer in double figures with 11 off the bench.
It's not quite time for a pity party for the Pacers. They own the Eastern Conference's best record and trail the Portland Trail Blazers fractionally for best record in the league.
They are 12 games clear of the Detroit Pistons in the Central Division.
The Pelicans ended a two-game road losing streak on Friday night with a 95-92 victory over the Boston Celtics.
The win was great for New Orleans, but came at a price. Leading scorer Ryan Anderson was carted off the court with a frightening neck injury early in the final period.
Boston's Gerald Wallace bumped into Anderson from behind as the Pelicans were attempting to inbound the ball from under their own basket with 11:02 remaining in the final period. Anderson remained on the floor for several minutes before having his neck immobilized by medical personnel and transported off the court to a local hospital.
Anderson was diagnosed with a cervical stinger.
"We are just praying for Ryan's health," head coach Monty Williams said. "He looked like he was OK. I was more worried about his mother. I know she's at home a nervous wreck so hopefully she hears this message and is cool with the fact that he's OK and in good hands."
Anthony Davis scored 10 of his game-high 23 points in the fourth quarter as the Pelicans won for the fourth time in their last six. Davis finished 9-of-12 from the field while adding nine rebounds and three blocks, with Tyreke Evans amassing 16 points on 8-of-13 shooting along with eight rebounds and six assists.
Anderson finished with 13 before he left. Greg Stiemsma, Brain Roberts and Eric Gordon also scored in double figures for New Orleans.
The Pacers bested the Pelicans by five in New Orleans on Oct. 30 and have captured five in a row in this series. Three of those five straight wins came at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.
01/04 10:34:24 ET