Both teams have started the season relatively well. The Indiana Pacers, in particular, have been impressive and currently hold a record of 7-4 on the season, which is good enough for fourth place in the East.
With both teams playing well at the moment, this matchup could be a fiercely competitive one.
Fixture: Indiana Pacers vs Portland Trail Blazers - NBA Season 2020-21.
Date & Time: Thursday, 14th January 2021 - 10:00 PM ET (Friday, 15th January 2021 - 8:30 AM IST).
Venue: Moda Center, Portland, OR.
Indiana Pacers Preview
This could be a tough match for the Indiana Pacers. Not only did they lose Victor Oladipo in a recent trade, they also have multiple key rotation players like Goga Bitadze, Brian Bowen ll and Jeremy Lamb unlikely to feature against the Portland Trail Blazers.
While the Indiana Pacers are a decent team at both ends, they do not come into this clash against the Portland Trail Blazers in the best of form, which may not augur well for their prospects in the game.
Key Player - Domantas Sabonis
Domantas Sabonis has been very impressive for the Indiana Pacers this season. The 24-year-old is averaging 21.8 points, 12.5 rebounds and 5.8 assists while shooting at 55.6% from the field and 37.5% from beyond the arc.
Moreover, the player has also improved at the defensive end of the floor and is an excellent rim protector.
Overall, Domantas Sabonis is by far the Indiana Pacers' best player at the moment. If the Portland Trail Blazers wish to win this game, they would need to shut down Sabonis before he brews up trouble for them.
Indiana Pacers Predicted Lineup
G Justin Holiday, G Edmond Summer, F Doug McDermott, F Domantas Sabonis, C Myles Turner.
Portland Trail Blazers Preview
Things are looking very good for the Portland Trail Blazers, as they have made an impressive 7-4 start to the season. They are currently on a four-game winning streak and have no major injury concerns.
The Portland Trail Blazers have always been a good team at the offensive end. However, their defense, or rather the lack of it, has been their undoing against the elite teams in the competition.
Nevertheless, after making some very good signings, the Portland Trail Blazers look stronger at both ends and are now a force to be reckoned with in the Western Conference.
Key Player - Damian Lillard
Damian Lillard has been an incredibly influential player for the Portland Trail Blazers this season.
The 30-year-old is averaging an impressive 27.4 points, 4.5 rebounds and seven assists while shooting at 44.2% from the field and 37.7% from beyond the arc.
With the player capable of an offensive explosion on any given night, the Indiana Pacers must look to lock up Damian Lillard if they wish to take this game.
Portland Trail Blazers Predicted Lineup
G Damian Lillard, G CJ McCollum, F Derrick Jones Jr., F Robert Covington, C Jusuf Nurkic.
Indiana Pacers vs Portland Trail Blazers Match Prediction
Despite the departure of Victor Oladipo, the Indiana Pacers undoubtedly have an excellent team. However, losing such a player of the caliber of Oladipo could hurt them, especially against the Portland Trail Blazers.
Meanwhile, the Portland Trail Blazers are only looking better with each passing game at both ends of the floor and have a fair bit of momentum with them at the moment.
While this could be a close and intriguing game, the Portland Trail Blazers are likely to take the win.