Sixers-Pacers: What you need to know


Sixers-Pacers: What you need to know

Sixers vs. Pacers, 7 p.m. — CSN
Wells Fargo Center, Philadelphia

Sixers: 21-26 (Fourth in Atlantic Division, ninth in Eastern Conference)

Pacers: 30-19 (First in Central Division, third in Eastern Conference)

Previous games
The Sixers held the injury-riddled Orlando Magic to a Wells Fargo Center record-worst 61 points in a 17-point victory on Monday. Spencer Hawes led all scorers with 21 points and 14 rebounds, while All-Star Jrue Holiday dished out 14 assists and committed just one turnover.

However, the Sixers suffered a major blow when power forward Thad Young went down with a Grade I hamstring strain. Young is expected to miss at least three weeks.

The Pacers head into Philadelphia for the third game of a back-to-back-to-back and riding a four-game winning streak. On Tuesday night, the Pacers handled the Atlanta Hawks behind double-digit scoring from seven different players with Paul George leading the way with 29.

Who’s hot
Hawes turned in his second double-double in the last three games against Orlando. Over the last seven games, Hawes has averaged 34 minutes per game, which is sure to go up with Young out.

Additionally, Holiday posted his 13th double-double of the season on Monday night, just one game after committing eight turnovers against Sacramento last Friday.

For the Pacers, George has scored 65 points in the last three games and is shooting 7 for 13 from three-point range over the last two games. Meanwhile, David West has scored 74 points in the last three games, shooting 28 for 44 (63.6 percent) from the field.

Who’s not
Evan Turner has just 18 total points in the last three games on a combined 8-for-26 shooting. Turner hasn’t hit a three-pointer since the Jan. 26 victory over the Knicks.

Probable starters
Sixers (last 10 games)
Jrue Holiday (22.4 ppg, 9.7 apg)
Nick Young (15.7 ppg, 45.2 FG percentage)
Evan Turner (14.0 ppg, 6.0 rpg)
Lavoy Allen (6.0 ppg, 5.0 rpg)
Spencer Hawes (11.9 ppg, 6.8 rpg)

Pacers (last 10 games)
David West (20.5 ppg, 6.5 rpg)
Paul George (18.9 ppg, 8.5 rpg)
Roy Hibbert (10.8 ppg, 8.3 rpg)
George Hill (15.1 ppg, 5.4 apg)
Lance Stephenson (8.5 ppg, 4.4 rpg)

Jason Richardson (left knee synovitis) is doubtful.
Andrew Bynum (bilateral knee bone bruises) is out.
Thad Young (Grade I hamstring strain) is out.

Danny Granger (knee) is out for three months.

Best of NBA: Cavs roll after getting rings; Warriors blown out

Best of NBA: Cavs roll after getting rings; Warriors blown out

CLEVELAND -- LeBron James had his 43rd career triple-double, Kyrie Irving scored 29 points and the Cleveland Cavaliers, who raised their championship banner before the game, beat the New York Knicks 117-88 on Tuesday night in the NBA season opener.

James scored 19 points and added 11 rebounds and 14 assists in front of a raucous home crowd that was on its feet from the pregame ceremony until late in the game, celebrating the city's first championship in 52 years.

James, who spoke to the crowd before the game, continued his perfect record on ring nights. He was 2-0 when the Miami Heat players were presented with their championship rings.

Irving scored 19 points in the third quarter, when Cleveland used a 20-4 run to take a 74-53 lead. Kevin Love scored 23 for the Cavaliers.

Carmelo Anthony led New York with 19 points and Derrick Rose had 17 (see full recap).

Leonard, Spurs blow out Warriors in Durant's debut
OAKLAND, Calif. -- Kawhi Leonard scored a career-high 35 points and the San Antonio Spurs emphatically spoiled Kevin Durant's long-awaited Warriors debut Tuesday with a 129-100 rout that sent Golden State fans for the exits early on opening night.

Durant had 27 points and 10 rebounds, but little looked in sync for MVP Stephen Curry and the reigning Western Conference champions in a forgettable first game -- and quite a different one after the Warriors dominated at home and came out of the blocks last season with a record 24-0 start.

Leonard scored 31 points by the end of the third, LaMarcus Aldridge added 26 points and 14 rebounds and Gregg Popovich thoroughly outdid a couple of his close friends on the opposite bench in reigning NBA Coach of the Year Steve Kerr and top assistant Mike Brown (see full recap).

Yes, San Antonio sent quite a message to the West.

Blazers win 16th straight home opener
PORTLAND, Ore. -- Damian Lillard scored 39 points and the Portland Trail Blazers extended their winning streak in home openers to a league-record 16 straight games with a 113-104 victory over the Utah Jazz on Tuesday night.

CJ McCollum added 25 points for the Blazers, who trailed 83-77 at the start of the fourth quarter. They were still down 102-99 with under 5 minutes left before McCollum made a pull-up jumper and 3-pointer to give Portland a 104-102 lead.

Lillard made a pair of free throws before nailing a 3-pointer that put Portland up 109-102 with 1:02 left and the Jazz couldn't catch up.

Joe Johnson scored 29 points in his debut with the Jazz and Rodney Hood added 26, including a rim-rattling dunk in the third quarter (see full recap).

Nerlens Noel undergoes surgery on sore left knee

Nerlens Noel undergoes surgery on sore left knee

Nerlens Noel has had surgery on his sore left knee, and the Sixers have not disclosed a timetable for the disgruntled center's return.

Noel has been out since the team's first preseason game. He initially had a left groin strain before experiencing soreness in the knee during rehab, and it was discovered he had an inflamed plica. 

The team is calling the surgery a "minor elective arthroscopic procedure." It was performed in New York by Dr. Riley J. Williams at the Hospital for Special Surgery.

Noel eventually will travel to Birmingham, Ala. to rehab with associate clinical director Kevin Wilk at Champion Sports Medicine.

The Sixers expect to have a timetable for his return once Noel returns to Philadelphia. According to Keith Pompey of The Philadelphia Inquirer, Noel is expected to miss three to five weeks. 

This has been a rough preseason for Noel, who hasn't hidden his displeasure with his role on the Sixers' jammed frontcourt. The team has until Oct. 31 to extend his rookie contract but, per a report in the Inquirer earlier this month, the two sides have yet to discuss it.