Is there a team in the NBA hotter than the New York Knicks?
New York has won eight games in a row, moving to the No. 3 seed in the Eastern Conference, just a game back of the No. 2-seeded Milwaukee Bucks. New York went 14-2 in January, but the team is down Julius Randle and has been without OG Anunoby in each of the last two games.
That’s going to put a lot of pressure on Jalen Brunson, but he’s shown he can handle it, putting up a combined 61 points and 16 assists over his last two games.
Now, the Knicks take on the No. 1 offense in the NBA in the Indiana Pacers, who lost their last game to Boston with Tyrese Haliburton (hamstring) playing on a minutes limit. He’s listed as questionable tonight.
The Knicks are favored at home, where they are 17-5 straight up. Can they cover on Thursday?
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Let’s break down the odds and my best bet for Thursday’s matchup:
Pacers vs. Knicks odds, spread and total
Pacers vs. Knicks how to watch
- Date: Thursday, Feb. 1
- Time: 7:30 p.m. EST
- Venue: Madison Square Garden
- How to watch (TV): MSG, Bally Sports Indiana
- Pacers record: 27-21
- Knicks record: 31-17
Pacers vs. Knicks injury reports
Indiana Pacers injury report
- Tyrese Haliburton – questionable
- Bennedict Mathurin – questionable
- Kendall Brown – questionable
- Isaiah Wong – questionable
- Oscar Tshiebwe – questionable
- TJ McConnell – questionable
- Jalen Smith – questionable
New York Knicks injury report
- OG Anunoby – questionable
- Quentin Grimes – questionable
- Julius Randle – out
- Mitchell Robinson – out
Pacers vs. Knicks key players to watch
Pascal Siakam: Siakam has had success against the Knicks in the past – putting up a 50-point game against them last season – and he’s scored 20 or more points in two meetings against New York this season. Since joining the Pacers, Siakam is averaging 21.6 points, 7.4 rebounds and 5.1 assists per game.
New York Knicks
Donte DiVincenzo: With Randle and Anunoby sidelined the last two games, it’s been DiVincenzo who has benefitted the most on offense. The Knicks two-guard has taken 30 3-pointers in his last two games, shooting 14-for-30 from deep in those games. He’s scored 28 and 33 points in those contests. The volume is going to be there for the Knicks sharpshooter.
Pacers vs. Knicks prediction and pick
New York has been the best team in the NBA since the start of 2024, ranking No. 6 in offensive rating, No. 1 in defensive rating and No. 1 net rating over the last month.
Now, the team will look to start February off on the right foot at home against the Pacers.
The Knicks are 11-6 against the spread as home favorites this season, easily covering in their last game against Utah despite not having Anunoby or Randle in action.
If Anunoby can return tonight, it would be a major boost for New York.
I am concerned about betting on the Pacers with Haliburton on a minutes limit – he didn’t end up playing the fourth quarter against Boston on Tuesday night.
Indiana is 9-7-1 ATS as a road underdog, but the team doesn’t defend at a high level, ranking 26th in the NBA in defensive rating. If the Knicks can continue to play defense at the level they did in January, this could be a tough game for the league’s No. 1 offense.
I lean with New York to cover this short number on Thursday.
Game odds refresh periodically and are subject to change.