It will be a big game for the Knicks who look to rebound after a disappointing loss to the Milwaukee Bucks on Monday.
Here are two keys for the Knicks to defend their home court and walk away with a big win.
2. Limit The Guards
This season, the Pacers have been boosted by extremely strong play from their guards.
Tyrese Haliburton has had a breakout season, becoming one of the best facilitators in the sport with over 10 assists per game.
Tyrese Haliburton this season:
— 1st in assists
— 4th in steals
— 9th in threes
The only player in the top 10 for all 3 categories. pic.twitter.com/1EVx2bkPHL
— StatMuse (@statmuse) January 8, 2023
He is also the team’s best scorer, averaging 20.3 points per game this season.
However, he is not the only guard playing well.
Buddy Hield is averaging 18 points per game and is shooting 42.3% from three, making him one of the most efficient shooters in the sport.
Bennedict Mathurin, the Pacers’ first-round pick from this year, is also averaging 17.1 from a guard position.
This trio presents a difficult matchup for any team.
For the Knicks to get a win, they will need to limit the production from this group and force the Pacers to beat them under the basket.
1. Get Julius Randle Going
Julius Randle is the heart and soul of this team.
In the Last Month, Julius Randle ranks
• 1st in the NBA in TOTAL POINTS
• 2nd in the NBA in REBOUNDS
• 6th in the NBA in 3-POINTERS pic.twitter.com/AvQ1LOurA2
— KnicksMuse (@KnicksMuse) January 7, 2023
We saw on Monday how the team struggles when he is unable to find the basket.
Coming off a 1-12 night from three, expect Randle to be looking to score early and often.
If they are able to let him heat up, he presents a difficult matchup for the guard-dominant Pacers.
Randle will need to be efficient and effective from the field if they hope to win.