Toronto Raptors at Indiana Pacers
Monday, 1/31/11, 7:00 PM EDT
Opening Point Spread: Indiana -8
Current Betting Line: Indiana -9
Opening Total: 208
Current Total: 210.5
Toronto has lost 11 straight games and its offensive production is the main reason by averaging just 93.7 points per game over that span. The Raptors managed to score 101 points a night during the first 37 games of the season, but their leading scorer has been going through a rough stretch. “Andrea is a little bit out of sync,” said coach Jay Triano. “Sometimes when he has a shot he doesn’t take it. He’s thinking about it too much.” The team is 12-14 when he scores 18 or more points and 0-16 when he’s held to 17 or fewer. Toronto continues a three-game road trip Monday night with the second of three meetings against Indiana this season. The squad has dropped five in a row at tonight’s venue, including a 124-100 decision on December 6. Toronto is 12-11 ATS on the road this season and currently a large underdog on the NBA lines page.
The Raptors have played 12 road games and just seven at home since December 25, with the total rising to 14 road games by the end of this particular trip. Toronto is focused on trying to end its fifth longest losing streak in franchise history. The streak reached 11 after a dismal 103-87 performance at Minnesota on Saturday. Offensively, the team shot a season-low .337 form the field, but six of the last 11 games have been dropped by six points or less.
Indiana found itself struggling through another disappointing season and finally a change had to be made in firing head coach Jim O’Brien Sunday. “We’ve been looking at everything with our team, from the beginning of the season and now at the halfway mark and I think at this time a change is necessary,” team president Larry Bird commented. “This isn’t all on Jim. All of us share in the responsibility.” Interim coach Frank Vogel has a good chance of getting of to a winning start, as the Pacers have averaged 120.0 points in five straight home victories over the Raptors, averaging an impressive 48.4 points in the paint. Indiana is 3-0 ATS as a home favorite of 6.5 to 9 points this season.
The Pacers are 10-11 overall at home this season, including an even 6-6 mark when hosting Eastern Conference foes. On its home floor, Indiana is 22-7 against Toronto, but hold a slim 23-22 margin in the last 45 meetings overall. The team is coming off a disappointing 110-89 road loss to Chicago on Saturday night, getting outscored 33-17 in the fourth quarter, dropping its record to 1-14 in the club’s last 15 road contests.
Bettors will be interested in backing the Pacers due to the home team being 13-3 ATS in the last 16 meetings, while the Raptors are 0-5 ATS in Indiana.