National Basketball Association
Milwaukee at Indiana
When: 7:00 PM ET, Wednesday, February 13, 2019
Where: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Indiana
The Milwaukee Bucks are heading toward the All-Star break with the best record in the NBA and look like the favorites in the Eastern Conference, but the Indiana Pacers are lurking to play spoiler. The Pacers will try to push their winning streak to seven in a row when they host the Bucks on Wednesday.
Indiana was left off the list of contenders in the East after All-Star guard Victor Oladipo went down for the season but bounced back from that devastating loss with an impressive winning streak and sits in third place in the East - ahead of presumed contenders Philadelphia and Boston. The Pacers improved to 4-0 on their five-game homestand with a 99-90 victory over the Charlotte Hornets on Monday as Wesley Matthews made his team debut. The Bucks avoided their first back-to-back losses of the season by knocking off the Chicago Bulls 112-99 on Monday as superstar Giannis Antetokounmpo returned from a one-game absence. "They tried to get us with a spoiler alert today," Milwaukee point guard Eric Bledsoe told reporters. "We couldn't let it happen, especially going into the (All-Star) break. You know, these games are crucial games even though our record is what it is. These are crucial games we should win."
7 p.m. ET, FS Wisconsin (Milwaukee), FS IndianaABOUT THE BUCKS (42-14):
Milwaukee is second in the NBA in scoring average at 117.1 points in its first season under coach Mike Budenholzer but can put in work on the defensive end as well. Antetokounmpo and center Brook Lopez each recorded three blocked shots on Monday as the Bucks held the Bulls to 38.5 percent shooting. "We were just trying to show bodies," Antetokounmpo told reporters. "Coach wants us to protect the paint; the paint's our home. That's what me and Brook did tonight."
ABOUT THE PACERS (38-19):
Several of their East rivals made deals at the deadline to better themselves but Indiana waited until the buyout market kicked off and secured Matthews by guaranteeing the veteran shooting guard a starting spot. Matthews went 2-of-10 from the floor in 30 minutes on Monday but still left his new teammates impressed. "I'm his biggest fan," point guard Darren Collison told reporters of Matthews. "I just love how he approaches the game. He doesn't really care too much about the offensive end, it's all about defense and helping the team win."BUZZER BEATERS
1. Lopez is 1-of-14 from 3-point range over the last two games.
2. Pacers PF Domantas Sabonis is 27-of-36 from the floor over the last five games.
3. The home team took each of the first two meetings this season, with Indiana claiming a 113-97 win over visiting Milwaukee on Dec. 12 while holding Antetokounmpo to 12 points.PREDICTION:
Bucks 119, Pacers 117
Stats and Records