The Indiana Pacers (23-22) visit the Oklahoma City Thunder (21-23) on Wednesday night. Promotion ends at 8:10 p.m. ET. Below we continue our NBA odds series with a Pacers Thunder prediction, pick and guide.
Indiana has lost four straight games, ranking eighth in the Eastern Conference. The Pacers covered 58% of their games, while 50% exceeded the projected total. Oklahoma City has won five of their last six games, ranking 10th in the Western Conference. The Thunder covered 64% of their games while completing 61%. This will be the first of two meetings between the teams. They shared last year’s streak, with the road team walking away with a narrow win in both matchups.
Here are Pacers-Thunder’s NBA odds, courtesy of FanDuel
NBA Odds: Pacers Thunder Odds
Indiana Pacers: +4 (-110)
Thunder from Oklahoma City: -4 (-110)
Over: 239.5 (-110)
Below: 239.5 (-110)
How to watch Pacers vs. Thunder
TV: Bally Indiana, Bally Oklahoma
Stream: NBA League Pass
Time: 8:00 p.m. ET / 5:00 p.m. PT
*Watch NBA games LIVE with fuboTV (click for free trial)*
Why the Pacers could cover the spread
Indiana can’t seem to figure out how to win without star guard Tyrese Haliburton as they’ve lost every one of their four games since his injury. Indiana’s biggest problems are on defense as they have allowed 123.5 points per game since his injury. That’s been the problem all season as the Pacers rank 22nd in points allowed (116.3 opp. PPG) and allow opponents to have the third-highest percentage of shots from beyond the arc (37% opp. 3%%). That being said, their strong offense keeps the Pacers in a good position to cover them as underdogs on the street. For the season, Indiana ranks 10th in scoring (115.5 PPG) and fifth in threes per game (14.2 3PM/game). They love going on breaks as they rank fourth in pace of play (104 possessions per game) and rank first in fast break scoring (19.1 PPG).
Without Haliburton, the Pacers were forced to look elsewhere for offensive production. Although they lost their last game to Milwaukee, that wasn’t a mistake by center Myles Turner. Turner scored 30 points, pulled down eight rebounds and hit four shots. He also hit five threes – a constant theme for him this season. This year, Turner ranks third on the team in scoring (17.4 PPG) while leading Indiana in rebounds (7.9 RPG) and blocks (2.3 BPG). The rare stretch-five, Turner averages 1.5 threes per game while shooting them at a 39% clip.
Because as good as Turner was out last time out, her clearest route to cover tonight is via her wings. The Pacers have solid backup guards to replace Haliburton, but their best offensive options come via Bennedict Mathurin and Buddy Hield. Mathurin ranks second among rookies in the standings as he averages 17.2 PPG on 42% shooting. Hield ranks second on the team with an average of 18 PPG. The veteran marksman is having a stellar season from beyond the arc, averaging 3.9 threes per game while shooting them at a 43% clip. Watch for both players to be more involved tonight as the team continues to look for a real number one option.
Why the thunder could cover the spread
The Thunder find themselves as one of the hottest teams in the league, having played their way into the 10th seed. They have a great chance to continue their success and cover tonight as a 4-point home favorite against a side who have lost by double digits in each of their last two games. The clearest way to cover Thunder is on the offensive. Oklahoma City ranks ninth in the standings (116.8 PPG). They dominate color, ranking third in color (55.5 PPG) and ninth in rebound (52.4 RPG).
Despite their dominance in depth, the Thunder have no big man. Instead, their primary source of inside scoring comes from their star guard, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. Among guards, SGA averages the second most field goals per game within five feet of the basket. Despite being the rare guard not to rely on his outside jumper, it’s hard to dispute the results. SGA averages 30.6 PPG while shooting 50% for the season. Indiana ranks 16th as a pedestrian in color allowable (49.5 opp PPG) – setting SGA up for another strong performance.
As good as SGA has been this season, Josh Giddey has really started to make his mark as a second goalscorer in recent games. The sophomore has averaged 20.2 PPG, 8.2 RPG and 7.8 APG in his last six games. Giddey’s all-around play is a constant triple-double threat to give Indiana fits on the defensive side of the ball.
Final Pacers Thunder Prediction & Pick
With the Pacers out of Haliburton, I want the Thunder to roll home and continue their recent winning streak.
Final Pacers Thunder Prediction & Pick: Oklahoma City Thunder -4 (-110)