The Indiana Pacers will tip-off against the Detroit Pistons today at 7:00 PM EST at Little Ceasers Arena in Detroit, Michigan. So far during preseason play, the Pacers currently have a 2-0 record and will look to stay undefeated despite not having many key players in their starting lineup.
Indiana defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers by a score of 106-102 in their previous game, and you can read my recap if you’re interested. Their fourth-quarter comeback was led by the rookie T.J. Leaf, who had 18 points in the fourth quarter and single handily outscored the Cavs as they only had 16 points.
The Pacers will be without many key players in this game as they are going to be resting Myles Turner, Victor Oladipo, Thaddeus Young, Bojan Bogdanovic, Lance Stephenson, and Domantas Sabonis. Also, Darren Collison will start, but he will only play for 12 minutes. It’s safe to say that their starting lineup and rotation will look quite different tonight.
Their starting lineup for this game hasn’t been confirmed yet and it’s hard to project, but it could be Collison, DeQuan Jones, Alex Poythress, T.J. Leaf, and Al Jefferson. However, it would not surprise me to see Cory Joseph used in the starting lineup to provide more of a veteran presence and playmaking support for Leaf.
As for the bench, Nate McMillan mentioned after Sunday’s practice that Ike Anigbogu would get some minutes. He didn’t explicitly say names when referring to the other players that he would like to see play, but Cory Joseph, Joseph Young, Alex Poythress, Ben Moore, and Jarrod Uthoff should also receive minutes off the bench.
Glenn Robinson III will remain out as he is rehabbing his sprained ankle. Also, Edmond Sumner is still rehabbing from his knee surgery, and Trey McKinney-Jones is recovering from his shoulder injury, and neither will play in this game. As previously mentioned, Anigbogu is going to receive some playing time, and that is an excellent development for the organization.
Detroit is expected to start Ish Smith, Avery Bradley, Stanley Johnson, Tobias Harris, and John Leur. Reggie Jackson is still dealing with a sore hip adductor and is listed as day-to-day, so there is a chance that he could play. Andre Drummond hasn’t been ruled out and could very well play, but he is also dealing with conjunctivitis.
It is expected that the Pistons will go with a shorter bench as Stan Van Gundy coached teams frequently do. Regarding their bench, I plan to see Luke Kennard, Langston Galloway, Eric Moreland, Anthony Tolliver, and Henry Ellenson. I wouldn’t expect Detroit to use a deeper bench unless the game is out of reach for either side.