How to Watch Pacers' Game With Knicks on Saturday; Gametime, TV, Point Spread

Grant Afseth

The Indiana Pacers will take on the New York Knicks to complete the second night of a back-to-back. In doing so, they will aim to snap a two-game losing streak.

In their previous outing, the Pacers fell short against the Celtics with 118-112 being the final score. Kemba Walker recorded a season-high 32 points and added 6 assists to go along with it. Indiana's lack of execution in the clutch proved to be too much to overcome. 

It was the opposite for the Knicks in their previous game. New York put up a staggering 140 points in their blowout win over the Sacramento Kings. New York had three of their players exceed the 20-point mark with Immanuel Quickley (25), Alec Burks (24), and Julius Randle (21) being among them.

There is a chance that Malcolm Brogdon will not play in this game. He's currently listed as questionable with a sore shoulder. Indiana would be without their entire regular starting perimeter if that were to occur. 

Here are the particulars on Saturday night's game:

  • Who: Indiana Pacers (15-16) vs. New York Knicks (16-17)
  • When: 8:00 p.m. ET, Friday, Feb. 27.
  • Where: Madison Square Garden, New York. 
  • Latest Line: Many oddsmakers consider the Pacers as being 1.5-point favorites.
  • Standings: The Pacers went from fourth in the Eastern Conference all the way to eighth following Friday's loss. Meanwhile, the Knicks rank ahead in the standings as they hold sixth spot.
  • Series history: New York leads the all-time series, 93-90.
  • Last meeting: On Jan. 2, 2021, the Pacers defeated the Knicks with 106-102 being the final score. Malcolm Brogdon was the team's top performance with 33 points with seven made three's. 
  • Projected Knicks starters: Derrick Rose, RJ Barrett, Reggie Bullock, Julius Randle, Nerlens Noel.
  • Projected Pacers starters: Malcolm Brogdon, Justin Holiday, Doug McDermott, Domantas Sabonis, Myles Turner.
  • TV: ESPN, Fox Sports Indiana.
  • Announcers: FOX Sports Indiana - Chris Denari (play-by-play), Quinn Buckner (analyst), Jeremiah Johnson (studio host), ESPN - Ryan Ruocco (play-by-play), Doris Burke (analyst), Cassidy Hubbarth (sideline reporter)
  • Radio: 93.5/107.5 The Fan - Mark Boyle (play-by-play), Eddie Gill (analyst), Pat Boylan (sideline reporter/host)

Here are three things to watch in this game: 

1. Knicks' Frontcourt

It has been a genuinely impressive season for Julius Randle and it was enough to land an NBA All-Star appearance. So far, he is posting averages of 23.2 points, 11.0 rebounds, and 5.5 assists while going 47.8% from the field and 41.6% from deep. He won't be easy to stop. 

Mitchell Robinson is sidelined due to injury and that will be something watch. However, Nerlens Noel has filled in for him quite admirably in the starting lineup. His athleticism and contributions inside the paint have been critical to their success. 

The emergence of Randle wasn't necessarily expected to take place but has been a welcomed surprise. One of the impacts has been a lack of playing time for Obi Toppin, who was the No. 8 pick in the 2020 NBA Draft. New York hasn't used him as a small ball center and that has limited his playing time.

2. Bench Scoring

In their previous outing, the Knicks received a staggering 49 points combined from Alec Burks (25) and Immanuel Quickley (24) off the bench. The Pacers will need Jeremy Lamb and Aaron Holiday to be clicking in order to compete in this category.

The Pacers have experienced some legitimate inconsistency in this area throughout the season. Not having TJ Warren healthy has kept Doug McDermott in the starting lineup and that's reduced the scoring capabilities of Indiana's bench. 

3. Bounce Back? 

At some point, the Pacers will need to pull off a bounce-back performance and turn things around if they are to make the playoffs. Indiana's recent struggles has put them in legitimate danger of outside of the playoff picture. 

The Knicks are one of their main competitors for one of the eight playoff spots in the Eastern Conference. Based on their recent play, New York has a chance to finish the season with a better record than the Pacers. Achieving a victory will be important for Indiana. 

Let's not forget, the Knicks could still make a move at the NBA trade deadline to further solidify their lineup. They have been linked to Andre Drummond among other potential trade targets. If they were to make a move, New York could another next step forward as a team.