NBA Preview from The Sports Network
Saturday, November 6th (All times eastern)
Chicago Bulls (0-1) at Indiana Pacers (2-0), 8 p.m.
(Sports Network) - Central Division rivals meet tonight, as the Chicago Bulls visit the Indiana Pacers tonight at Conseco Fieldhouse.
The Pacers are trying to open a season with three straight wins for the first time since 1995-96.
Austin Croshere scored seven of his 16 points during a crucial stretch in the fourth quarter, leading the Pacers to a 100-94 win over the Boston Celtics at on Friday at the FleetCenter.
Ron Artest tallied a game-high 28 points and grabbed seven rebounds for the Pacers, who have won both of their contests this season. Artest shot 9-of-19 from the floor and 8-of-8 from the free throw line, but more importantly held Boston sharp-shooter Paul Pierce to just 5-of-14 shooting.
Croshere added eight rebounds for the Pacers, who outrebounded the Celtics 52-31 and outscored them by 18 points (22-4) in second-chance points. Jermaine O'Neal, who was not expected to play because of a foot injury, came off the bench and scored 19 points in 24 minutes.
Chicago has lost 12 straight and 13 of its last 14 at Indiana. The last time the Bulls won at the Pacers was on March 17, 1998.
On Friday, the Bulls fell to the New Jersey Nets in double-overtime, 111-106, at the United Center. Kirk Hinrich poured in a career-high 34 points and added eight assists for the Bulls, who nearly overcame a double-digit second-half deficit before giving way in the end.
Othella Harrington scored 19 points and Andres Nocioni contributed 17 points and 14 rebounds in the loss to the Nets for Chicago, which played its season- opener after being the last NBA team to play a game this year. Luol Deng, drafted with the seventh overall pick in the 2004 draft and later traded to the Bulls, scored 18 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in the loss.
In 2003-04, the Pacers defeated the Bulls in three of the four meetings between the two clubs. Chicago's lone victory was an 86-75 win on December 13, 2003 at the United Center. Overall, the home team has won seven of eight and nine of the last 11 contests in this series.
11/06 10:13:06 ET