Indiana Pacers 2019-20 Game #4 Review: @ Brooklyn Nets

Brooklyn Nets (1-3) 108-118 Indiana Pacers (1-3)

Venue: Barclays Centre

Date: 30.10.19

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A monster performance from Domantas Sabonis ensured the Indiana Pacers (1-3) finally claimed their first win of the NBA season, as they defeated the Brooklyn Nets (1-3) 118-108 at Barclays Centre.

Sabonis finished with 29 points, two-shy of his career-best, with ten of those coming in the fourth quarter. The Nets couldn’t find a way to defend the big Lithuanian, with DeAndre Jordan committing a series of fouls when trying to defend him.

Most of the starters made massive contributions last night. Jeremy Lamb returned to the starting line-up following a slight hip injury and made an instant impact. He was shooting 3s and easy looks from the get-go, as he finished with 25 points to his name. T.J. Warren ended with 20 points, whilst Malcolm Brogdon secured a fourth consecutive double-double with 21 points and a career-high 13 assists. By the end of the night Indiana had shot 46.9% from the field in what was an impressive night on the offensive end.

However, more injury woes beckon though for the Blue & Gold. Myles Turner got through around three quarters of the first quarter before spraining his ankle following a collision with Garrett Temple. He was helped by teammates as he gingerly made his way back to the locker room, but it’s more than likely that the Pacers will be without their big centre for the next few games.

The rotation was better from an Indiana standpoint. Aaron Holiday and Goga Bitadze came in and did well, whilst Doug McDermott was solid in defence and shot some crucial 3-pointers earlier on in the game just as Brooklyn looked to put a run together.

Kyrie Irving was the Nets biggest threat and top-scored for Brooklyn with 25 points, but once again a leaky defence condemned them to a second consecutive loss and a 10th defeat in 11 meetings with Indiana. With 19 turnovers and multiple passes that flew out of bounds, the Nets look like they are also a team trying to get a feel for one another, after eight new players came through the doors in the off-season.

As the Pacers avoided an 0-4 start, which hasn’t happened since the 1988-89 season, attention now turns to Friday night’s rematch with the Cleveland Cavaliers (2-2) back at Bankers Life Fieldhouse.

Indiana Pacers 2019-20 Game #4 Preview: @ Brooklyn Nets

Opponents: Brooklyn Nets (1-2)

Venue: Barclays Center

Tip-off: 7:30pm ET, 11:30pm GMT

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The Indiana Pacers (0-3) finish their three-game road trip at the Barclays Centre against the free-scoring Brooklyn Nets (1-2) this evening.

Monday’s defeat at the Detroit Pistons (2-2) was a tough one. The team performed much better, particularly in that second half. The team’s chemistry – especially among the starting line-up – is evidently getting stronger, which is promising heading into November. The Brooklyn Nets will be no easy place to go this season, so the Pacers will need to perform like they did in that second half in Michigan if they are to get the win.

Kyrie Irving must be stopped at all costs. Signed in the summer from the Boston Celtics (2-1), Irving has led the charge on the scoring front. He put down 50 points on his debut and averages a league high 37.7 points per game. Alongside the Milwaukee Bucks (2-1), the Nets are averaging a massive 124 points per game. Despite signs of improvement in their last outing, the Indiana defence is still nowhere near a final product. It could be another long night on that front.

However, for all their firepower offensively, the Nets have not backed that up on the defensive end. A 134-133 overtime defeat to the Memphis Grizzlies (1-3) last time out was a bitter pill for them to swallow. Without being able to hold a team under 109 points in any of their previous three games, the opportunities to score high will be there for the Pacers.

Malcolm Brogdon has three double-doubles to his name and is currently the leading assist maker in the league, averaging just over 10 a game. Domontas Sabonis comes in off the back of a 21-point score in Detroit, as he looks to continue averaging over 20 points a game. Both men will need to lead the line offensively again tonight, but this game is there for the taking.

It is the 27th best offence against the 28th best defence in the league at present. If the second unit can finally put up decent numbers off the bench and the team manage to sink more 3 attempts, then there is no reason why Indiana cannot pick their first win of the season tonight.

It will also be imperative that the Pacers play four solid quarters. In their previous three games the Blue & Gold have been let down by one or two poor 12-minute phases which ultimately leave them too much to do. We saw that in the fourth on opening night, second last Saturday and first on Monday. If Irving is on it and this Nets team get away and obtain a 10 or 12-point lead early on, then it could be curtains early doors.

The Pacers may be buoyed by the possible return of Jeremy Lamb, who practised with the team yesterday. Lamb has missed the previous two with a slight hip injury and could come back into the team or make an appearance off the bench should Nate McMillan decide to mix it up a little to try and solve the low scoring issue.