Los Angeles Clippers at Indiana Pacers (-2, 187)
The Indiana Pacers will be without center Roy Hibbert when they seek their sixth straight win Thursday at home against the Los Angeles Clippers. Hibbert was ejected after a brawl with Golden State on Tuesday, and received a one-game suspension. Star forward David West, who also picked up a technical for his role, managed to avoid any discipline. West had a team-high 28 points in the 106-97 victory, which kept Indiana six games behind East-leading Miami.
Like the Pacers, the Clippers are still hoping to chip away at the top spot in their respective conference. Having won six of seven, they entered Wednesday 4 1/2 games behind front-running San Antonio in the West. Blake Griffin and DeAndre Jordan, who could have field days with Hibbert out, combined to go 17-for-20 from the floor in a 106-84 rout of Charlotte on Wednesday. Chris Paul had 13 of Los Angeles' season-high 34 assists.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, Prime Ticket (Los Angeles), Fox Sports Midwest (Indiana)
ABOUT THE CLIPPERS (41-18, 33-26-0 ATS): The easy win over Charlotte came without two key reserves. Super sub Jamal Crawford, who ranks second on the team to Griffin in scoring, missed the game after his wife gave birth to a daughter Monday in Seattle. Fellow guard Eric Bledsoe sat with a sore left calf. Crawford is expected to return against Indiana. Bledsoe, the top assist man off the bench, is day-to-day. Veteran Grant Hill was questionable Tuesday night with a bothersome back, but managed to play 21 minutes as the Clippers finished a 2-1 homestand.
ABOUT THE PACERS (36-21, 33-24-0 ATS): While it will be shorthanded up front, Indiana may begin to lean a bit more on swingman Danny Granger, who will be playing his third game since returning from a left knee injury suffered just before the season began. Granger, who led the Pacers in scoring the previous five seasons, has predictably struggled a bit since coming back. He is just 2-for-17 from the floor in a total of 38 minutes, but one of his makes helped Indiana keep its edge in the fourth quarter Tuesday.
* Favorite is 5-0 ATS in the last five meetings.
* Home team is 6-0 ATS in the last six meetings.
* Under is 11-3-1 in the last 15 meetings.
* Under is 7-2 in the last nine meetings in Indiana.
* Clippers are 2-5 ATS in the last seven meetings in Indiana.
1. The Pacers are 30-8 all-time against the Clippers at home.
2. Each of Los Angeles' last nine games have been decided by double digits. In that span, it has won seven games by an average of 15.7 points. The two losses have come by an average of 24.
3. Indiana has won 19 of its last 21 home games.