The Pacers and Heat face off in a massive Eastern Conference clash on NBA Thursday (all times AEST).
Miami have won seven of their last nine to currently sit third in the East at 26-10. Most recently they defeated the Trail Blazers at home 122-111 on Sunday to improve to a league-best 17-1 at home. However, Erik Spoeltra’s side is just 9-9 on the road.
Jimmy Butler (back) missed the Portland win but practiced on Wednesday and is expected to suit up against the Pacers.
Indiana are not far behind Miami in the standings, currently sitting in the East’s sixth seed at 23-14. Nate McMillan’s team is 15-4 at home.
The Pacers’ form has been patchy, losing four of their last five before getting things back on track with a 115-104 road win against Charlotte on Tuesday.
Malcolm Brogdon (back) has been out since December 22 and is a game-time decision here.
These two teams faced off in Miami on December 28, with the Heat winning 113-112.
The Nuggets visit Dallas in a huge Western Conference battle to open ESPN’s double header.
Denver have won four of their last six games, most recently ousting the Hawks on Tuesday behind a career-high 47 points from Nikola Jokic. The star big man added four threes, eight rebounds and five assists with no turnovers.
Denver’s defence has dropped off from where it was earlier in the season but they have scored over 114 points in five of their last six contests. They sit second in the West at 25-11.
The Mavs currently occupy the West’s six seed, having dropped three of their last five games. They defeated Chicago 118-110 on Tuesday behind a monster triple-double from Luka Doncic (38 points, 11 rebounds, 10 assists).
Kristaps Porzingis (knee) has missed the last four games and has no timetable on a return, despite previous optimism that he would take the court against the Nuggets.
These teams faced off in Denver back in October, with the Mavericks winning 109-106.
The Bucks and Warriors cap off the ESPN double header at the Chase Centre.
Milwaukee remain on the top of the East and hold the best record in the NBA at 32-6. They had won five in a row before falling to the Spurs on the road on Tuesday 127-118.
The Bucks are at full strength again with Eric Bledsoe (fibula) back in the fold after an extended time on the sidelines. They have the league’s best defensive rating (102.2) and are second in scoring (119.2 points per game).
The Warriors are still dead last in the West at 9-29. After a recent resurgence of form where they won four in a row, they have since dropped their last five.,
Golden State waived Marquese Chriss earlier in the week to clear a roster spot for Damion Lee, per ESPN. Lee has been a revelation for Steve Kerr’s team as a starter, averaging 15.4 points, 1.6 triples, 7.9 rebounds and 1.6 steals over the last fortnight.
D’Angelo Russell continues to miss time with a shoulder issue amidst an injury-ravaged season for the Dubs.
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Milwaukee Bucks (25-14) at Philadelphia 76ers (28-12) The Bucks come into this important clash against the 76ers with 4 straight wins and 9 wins in their last 10. As usual, Giannis Antetokounmpo has been the key man for the Bucks and he’s recorded an incredible 3 straight triple-doubles. With no Joel Embiid on the court […]
Washington Wizards at Philadelphia 76ers The Wizards will look to improve on a close loss in Game 1 of this series. Their defence struggled in the 3rd quarter as they were outscored 38-31 and turnovers were an issue. Westbrook and Beal both turned the ball over 6 times. However, Beal was efficient scoring wise with […]