Pacers stay at Staples to face Clippers


The Indiana Pacers begin game two of their west coast road trip tonight when they play the Los Angeles Clippers without CP3 at the Staples Center.

WHO: Indiana Pacers (11-5) @ L.A. Clippers (10-8)
WHEN: Tonight, 10:30 pm ET / 9:30 pm CT
WHERE: Staples Center (Los Angeles, CA)

RADIO: 1070 the Fan

The Pacers
Life is still very good for the Blue & Gold now. Paul George is on fire, the team is, for the most part, healthy, and they’re on another five-game win streak. However, to mark tonight’s match-up with the Clippers as an easy W would be presumptuous to say the least.

From a Pacers standpoint, the numbers are holding up on both ends of the floor. Their 9.6 steals per game have them at third in the league, and they have an incredible defensive rating (95.5), second only to the San Antonio Spurs (93.4). Offensively, they’re still solidly in the top half of the league in points per game (101.8) and are second in the league in 3pt% at 40% flat.

All that said, Indiana will need the very best out of their star man George as well as the rest of the starting five to keep up with the incredibly athletic Clippers. Size is a concern when Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan are together, so the big lineup might return tonight as the Pacers try to adjust. If not, C.J. Miles has a big challenge ahead of him.

The Clippers
Los Angeles is also on a mini-run of wins (3) but will be without Chris Paul tonight, per the team account.

One of the best offensive teams in the league, the Clippers sit at third in points per game (103.4) and fourth in field goal percentage (46.4%), but sit in the bottom half of the league in defensive rating. If the Pacers get hot early, L.A. might make adjustments. But if they can get something going down low offensively they might play things out until it stops working.

Next: Indiana faces Cameron Crazies tonight at Duke

Tonight’s road test would send Indiana into the second night of a back-to-back against the Trail Blazers with some momentum, but conserving energy is an option if possible.

Tipoff for tonight set for 10:30 pm ET.