The Atlanta Hawks and Indiana Pacers wrap up their four-game season series this evening at Bankers Life Fieldhouse Arena.
Indiana leads the series 2-1, and won the last two in a row over Atlanta after the Hawks won the first meeting of the season back on January 8 by a 10-margin at home in Philips Arena.
The Pacers were the top overall seed in the Eastern Conference for majority of the season, however their recent skid has dropped them to the #2 spot behind defending two-time champion Miami Heat.
Indiana is 3-7 in their last 10 games.
Miami beat the New York Knicks earlier today and now lead the Pacers by 1/2 game in the standings. If Indiana beats Atlanta, they’ll be tied with the Heat once again atop the Eastern Conference.
Meanwhile, the Hawks hold the eighth and final spot in the East and lead 9th-place New York by 1.5 games. According to John Hollinger’s Playoff Odds at ESPN.com, the Hawks have an 86.3 percent likelihood of making the playoffs over the Knicks.
The players to watch between the Hawks and Pacers are sharpshooter Kyle Korver for Atlanta and All-Star small forward Paul George for Indiana.
Korver is arguably Atlanta’s most important player, and the team’s 1-9 record when he’s not playing speaks volumes.
Korver is averaging 15.0 points on .630 FG% and .529 3FG% in three contests against the Pacers, while George is averaging 24.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.3 steals in three games against the Hawks.
Who?: Atlanta Hawks vs Indiana Pacers
What?: Eastern Conference Showdown (Game #76, Road Game #39)
Where?: Bankers Life Fieldhouse (Indianapolis, IN)
When?: Sunday, April 6, 2014 – 6:00 PM (ET)
How?: NBA TV
PG: Jeff Teague | SG: Kyle Korver | SF: DeMarre Carroll | PF: Paul Millsap | C: Pero Antic
PG: George Hill | SG: Lance Stephenson | SF: Paul George | PF: David West | C: Roy Hibbert
Atlanta Hawks: Gustavo Ayon (right shoulder surgery), Al Horford (right pectoral muscle surgery) and John Jenkins (lower back surgery) are out.
Indiana Pacers: Andrew Bynum (sore right knee) and C.J. Watson (right hamstring strain) are out.
Current Records, Streak & Hot, Lukewarm, or Cold
Records: Atlanta Hawks (33-42) / Indiana Pacers (53-24)
Streaks: Atlanta Hawks –> OVERALL: Won 1 | HOME: Won 1 | ROAD: Lost 3 Indiana Pacers –> OVERALL: Lost 1 | HOME: Won 1 | ROAD: Lost 6
Home/Away Records: Pacers are (34-5) at home / Hawks are (11-27) on the road.
Atlanta Hawks: Lukewarm. The six-game losing streak is behind the Hawks and they have won two of their last three games, and control their own playoff destiny as the have a one-game lead for the 8th seed in the East.
Indiana Pacers: Cold. The Pacers have lost four of their last five, including four straight losses to playoff-bound teams.
Series Notes/Past Series Notes
The Hawks make their second visit to Indiana for the fourth-and-final matchup this season. Atlanta won the first meeting 97-87 at Philips Arena on 1/8. The Pacers took the second contest 89-85 in Atlanta on 2/4 and followed that with a 108-98 triumph at home on 2/18. Kyle Korver is averaging 15.0 points on .630 FG% and .529 3FG% in three contests against Indiana. Paul George is averaging 24.0 points, 7.0 rebounds and 2.3 steals in three games against the Hawks. The Pacers have won three straight over Atlanta at home. The Hawks’ last road victory came on 3/6/12 (101-96). Atlanta leads the all-time series 93-79 (33-53 on the road).
LAST MEETING — PACERS 108, HAWKS 98 — @ INDIANAPOLIS — 2/18/14
A 27-5 first quarter run gave Indiana an early 31-9 lead (their largest of the night) but the Hawks got back into it, cutting it to three before settling for a 57-49 deficit at the break. The Pacers went back up 19 in the third before Atlanta got it back down to seven. Indiana pushed the advantage to 12 at the end of the stanza and led by double-figures the rest of the night. Kyle Korver (7-10 FGs, 5-7 3FGs) led Atlanta with 19 points. Lou Williams scored 18, Mike Scott 13, Cartier Martin 12 and Shelvin Mack 11. Indiana’s Paul George topped all scorers with 26 points. The Hawks outrebounded the home team 44-36 (12-6 on the offensive glass) and had advantages of 16-9 in second chance points and 16-11 in fast break points. Atlanta committed 22 turnovers on the night leading to 35 points, while the Pacers had 14 miscues leading to seven points for the visitors.
Hawks Assistant Coach Jim Thomas played two seasons for Indiana (1983-85) after being selected by the Pacers in second round of the 1983 NBA Draft, following a standout career at Indiana University. Hawks Assistant Coach Darvin Ham played one game for the Pacers in 1996-97. Jeff Teague is a native of Indianapolis (Pike High School). Shelvin Mack attended Butler University in Indianapolis. Donald Sloan played five games for Atlanta in 2011-12. Kyle Korver and C.J. Watson teamed-up with Chicago from 2010-12. Korver (Chicago 2010-11) has also been teammates with Rasual Butler. George Hill (2008-11) and Ian Mahinmi (2007-10) played for San Antonio while Hawks Head Coach Mike Budenholzer was an Assistant on the Spurs bench. Luis Scola teamed with DeMarre Carroll in Houston for part of 2010-11.