East Notes: Pacers, Pascal Siakam, Bulls, Magic


Coach Rick Carlisle indicated that Wednesday’s win over the Pelicans was no small potatoes.Pascal Siakam, Indiana Pacers, NBA

“It’s a massively important win,” Carlisle told reporters. “This time of year, each game has such great meaning.”

Carlise is speaking the truth. The Pacers (34-26) are in an air-tight Eastern Conference race with just 22 games to go. That includes Friday’s rematch in New Orleans.

  • Forward Pascal Siakam is enjoying his time next to All-Star point guard Tyrese Haliburton. “I knew he’s a pass-first kind of guy,” Siakam said of the NBA assists leader. “With the gravity that he has on offense, I’m just trying to make the right reads, the right cuts, and I know the ball is going to find me. We’ve got something special. I’m happy to be on the same team.”


Center Andre Drummond yanked down a whopping 26 rebounds in Wednesday’s double-overtime home win over the Cavaliers, and said the Bulls intend to keep battling despite what has been an uneven season.

For instance, Chicago lost at home to Detroit on Tuesday, before beating the No. 2 seed in the Eastern Conference.

“It just speaks to this team, we continue to fight,” Drummond told reporters. “We gave a good fight. (Tuesday), we let our guard down a little bit. We knew what we did wrong. Tonight, we played a team that was very high in the standings and came out ready to play.”

  • Guard Alex Caruso missed Wednesday’s thriller with a strained hamstring and coach Billy Donovan said he wasn’t sure when Caruso might return. Much of it likely has to do with how it responds to treatment on Thursday.


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