Nets-Pacers Preview: Prepare for Another Blowout


The Nets will host the Indiana Pacers Wednesday night in their last game of a long stretch of home games. After this, they will be on the road for a 4-game west coast trip. The Pacers are one of the eastern conference’s better teams and sit in fifth place right now. They are coming off of a blowout home win over Miami and have won 4 of their last 5 games and are maybe playing their best basketball of the season right now. They have a balanced attack on offense, led by former all-stars Danny Granger, Roy Hibbert, and David West. Also, their defense is one of the best in the NBA, only giving up an average of 93.2 points per game.

To make things worse for the Nets, the Pacers are just one of those teams that they simply cannot beat, which is surprising because the Pacers have not been a good team at all over the last 5 years. The last time the Nets beat Indiana, Devin Harris hit a buzzer beater in Indiana. The last time the Nets beat them at home was over 4 years ago and they currently have a 9-game losing streak against them. The Nets are 0-3 against Indiana this season already. None of the three games have been extremely close, but they haven’t been blowouts either. I expect things to be different in this game.

To make things even worse for the Nets, they will be without Jordan Farmar and Anthony Morrow for the second straight game. They also have yet to call somebody up from the D-League to replace Jerry Smith, but that will probably be done at some point before the game. I hope to see either JamesOn Curry or L.D. Williams be the next call up. The Nets need guards with all their recent injuries and Dennis Horner and Jeff Foote have already had their chance in the NBA this year. JamesOn has only played 6 seconds in his NBA career and he deserves a shot. He’s averaging 17 ppg and 6 apg with the Armor this year. L.D. Williams has never played in the NBA, but he is averaging 16 ppg and 6 rpg with the Armor. It also makes sense for the Nets to call up L.D. because they are really lacking in Williams’s after trading Shawne to Portland. The team is only down to 3 now with Deron, Jordan, and Shelden. L.D. will be able to fill that Williams hole.

Key matchups:

Deron Williams vs. Darren Collison. Advantage: Williams

This is the only matchup where the Nets will have an advantage. Collison is not a bad player, but his offense sometimes becomes very stale. Any given night he could score 5 points, but his defense is always solid. He’s also not a great shooter. I expect Coach Avery to play Deron less than 30 minutes in this game, because by that time it will be such a blowout that there’s no need for him to stay in the game. I don’t think Deron will play well at all.

Marshon Brooks vs. Paul George. Advantage: George

When you think of “Nets Killers”, Paul George has to be right up there. This season, George hit his first 9 three-point attempts against the Nets and is averaging 19 points against the Nets this year, when his season average is 12. I wouldn’t be surprised to see a similar performance from him in this game. Marshon: play better. That’s all I have to say to you.

Gerald Wallace vs. Danny Granger. Advantage: Granger

This should be a pretty even matchup, but Granger is clearly better than Crash. He’s averaging 18 ppg this year and is the leading scorer for Indiana. I have been a little disappointed with Wallace’s defense so far, and his shooting percentage has been very low. Granger won’t have a huge game, but he won’t need to.

Kris Humphries vs. David West. Advantage: West

David West’s numbers have been way down this season, only averaging 12 points and 7 rebounds per game. The Hump is better in both categories, but I just think West has a good matchup here. He won’t outrebound The Hump, but his post moves will beat him. West can also shoot midrange jumpers, and Humphries always struggles against those types of players.

Shelden Williams vs. Roy Hibbert. Advantage: Hibbert

This could be a fun matchup to watch. Hibbert is clearly the more skilled player, but nothing is ever easy when Shelden Williams is guarding you. Shelden will put up a good fight against a much taller player because Shelden is bigger and fatter than Hibbert. This should be a good matchup.

What I haven’t talked about above is the Pacers’ bench, which is far superior to that of the Nets. It is led by George Hill, Leandro Barbosa, and Tyler Hansbrough, all players capable of being Nets Killers. My bold prediction for tonight is that the Pacers will have 7 players score in double-figures. This will be because the game will be such a blowout in the third quarter, that the Pacers will remove all their starters and the bench players will then be able to score points. However, I don’t think anybody on Indiana will score over 20. My score prediction is that the Pacers will be victorious, 109-83 in yet another blowout loss for the Nets.