Domantas Sabonis and the Pacers are in Brooklyn to battle the short-handed Nets. (Photo by Adam Davis/Icon Sportswire)
- The Nets will be looking to get back in the win column Wednesday against the Pacers
- Brooklyn has won just once in their last five games, while Indiana has lost three consecutive contests
- Get the odds, preview, and best bet below for this Eastern Conference showdown
The Brooklyn Nets will play their second game of a back-to-back on Wednesday, February 10th against the Indiana Pacers, tip-off 8pm ET at the Barclays Center.
Brooklyn suffered a disappointing loss to a poor Detroit Pistons team on Tuesday evening, while Indy hasn’t played since Sunday when they were beaten by the surging Utah Jazz. The Pacers took two of three from the Nets in a pair of lopsided victories last season.
Pacers vs Nets Odds
|Indiana Pacers||+2 (-110)||+110||N/A|
|Brooklyn Nets||-2 (-110)||-130||N/A|
Odds taken Feb 9 at Fanduel
Pacers Need A Win
Heading into Wednesday’s matchup on a three-game losing streak, things won’t get any easier against an offensive powerhouse in the Nets. However, they’re still without Kevin Durant, which is certainly a good thing for Indiana.
The Pacers were simply outplayed by a red-hot Utah Jazz team on Sunday, especially on the glass. Rudy Gobert and co. destroyed Indy inside, out-rebounding Nate Bjorkgren’s team 61-45. Domantas Sabonis led the way for the Pacers, dropping 20 points and collecting nine boards.
They were relying on the Lithuanian far too much in this contest though, which usually works in their favor. But with Gobert a much bigger and stronger figure around the rim, Sabonis was outmatched.
Indiana cut a 10-point deficit in the fourth quarter to tie the game at 83, but the storyline on Sunday was their struggles from the field. They shot just 40%, while also converting just 8-for-29 on threes. The Pacers will be hoping to find their touch from downtown on Wednesday though, after setting a franchise record last Friday against the Pelicans where they drained 20 three-pointers.
Brooklyn bound ✌️#AlwaysGame pic.twitter.com/xOxnueQraq
— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) February 9, 2021
If there’s any time that Indy would actually want to play Brooklyn, it would be right now. Even with Kyrie Irving back in the lineup from a finger sprain, the Nets look lost defensively, losing four of their last five games. A solid effort from Indiana’s leading scorers in Sabonis and Malcolm Brogdon will be necessary if they want to end their winless streak.
Nets Not Looking Like Contenders
All the talk when James Harden was acquired by the Nets was how this team would instantly become title favorites. Well, since his arrival, that has certainly not been the case. Sure, there have been some COVID-19-related issues/injuries for Durant and Irving, but there’s no way you can look past the atrocious defense Brooklyn has been playing.
They’re third in offensive rating and 27th in defensive rating, which is one of the biggest contrasts you’ll ever see. The Nets are allowing 118.2 points per game, which is second-worst in the league to only the Washington Wizards, while also scoring the most points per contest in the association at 121.5.
On a more positive note though, Harden has looked good since the trade. He’s averaging 23.8 points and 11.8 assists per game and serving as Brooklyn’s primary facilitator. The Beard is also grabbing 8.1 rebounds per night, which is a career-high.
Even though the Nets are on a losing skid right now, it’s fair to note that Durant’s absence has played a big part. He was forced off against the Raptors last week in a bizarre string of events due to COVID-19 contact tracing and won’t be available again until this Friday.
📊 Final Stats 📊@KyrieIrving ▫️ 27p ▫️ 7a@JHarden13 ▫️ 24p ▫️ 12a ▫️ 6r ▫️ 5blk@unclejeffgreen ▫️ 10p@landryshamet ▫️ 10p pic.twitter.com/Q8IinF5bCD
— Brooklyn Nets (@BrooklynNets) February 10, 2021
There is no questioning that with one of the best trios in the history of the game, Brooklyn has a real shot at greatness. But unless they tighten it up on the defensive end, a title run won’t be in the cards this season. Let’s be honest: that’s why KD, Kyrie, and Harden all teamed up in the first place.
Both of these teams are on a cold streak and it’s only a matter of time until one of them breaks out of it. The Nets enter as 2-point favorites and I honestly think you’ll see a close contest that comes down to the wire here.
Brooklyn is just 10-16 ATS this season, while Indiana is 11-13. The Nets are also 10-5 on home court this season. With all this taken into consideration, expect Harden and Irving to lead their team to a much-needed victory while covering the spread.
Pick: Brooklyn Nets -2 (-110)
Quinn Allen is a sports journalist, with a background and education in broadcast journalism (BCIT ’17). He writes about European Football, Basketball, and Baseball for numerous sites across the globe.