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National Basketball Association
Preview
Memphis at Indiana
When: 7:00 PM ET, Friday, October 31, 2014
Where: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Indianapolis, Indiana

Teams that rely on their big men meet Friday when Indiana hosts Memphis. With several teammates out with injuries, a rejuvenated Roy Hibbert controlled the middle in the Pacers' season-opening win over Philadelphia with 22 points, eight rebounds and seven blocks. Likewise in Memphis, Marc Gasol scored a career-high 32 points and Zach Randolph added 25 and 13 rebounds as the Grizzlies edged Minnesota in their opener.

Hibbert had no choice but to step up Wednesday with starters David West (ankle) and George Hill (knee) out for a few weeks and star Paul George lost for the season with a severe leg injury. "Obviously, with so many of the other guys out of the lineup, we called his number a little bit more than normal," Pacers coach Frank Vogel told reporters. "He played a physical brand of basketball. He was effective, obviously, when he got the ball." Conversely, Memphis returned its core group that took Oklahoma City to seven games in the first round of the playoffs last year pretty much intact, and those players came through as the Grizzlies snapped a 13-game losing streak in season openers.

TV: 7 p.m. ET, FSN Indiana, SportSouth (Grizzlies)

ABOUT THE GRIZZLIES (1-0): Memphis won its 15th straight home game dating to last season Wednesday but is looking to snap a three-game losing streak in road openers in this one. Gasol and Randolph shot a combined 24-of-33 against the T-Wolves and, although the team was outrebounded 47-33 by the smaller, younger T-Wolves, the duo combined for 22 boards. Memphis will need more help from the bench, as the reserves were outscored 46-10 by Minnesota's and shot 3-of-16.

ABOUT THE PACERS (1-0): Indiana brought in C.J. Miles and Rodney Stuckey to replace George and the departed Lance Stephenson, and Miles scored 15 points in the opener while Stuckey added 16 with five assists in 16 minutes playing on a bum leg. However, the biggest perimeter contribution came from journeyman point guard Donald Sloan, who tallied 16 points, 10 rebounds and six assists subbing for Hill and C.J. Watson (foot). The 7-2 Hibbert needed a shot in the arm in the opener, as the center averaged just nine points in his final 55 games, including the playoffs, last season.

BUZZER BEATERS

1. Hibbert topped 22 points just once in his final 43 games last season.

2. Memphis was able to hang in against Minnesota despite the rebounding margin because of 23 forced turnovers and 52.4 percent shooting.

3. The teams split two games last season and the Pacers swept two games in 2012-13.

PREDICTION: Grizzlies 95, Pacers 88

Stats and Records
Team Comparison
  W/L Strk Home Away Day Night Div Conf
Memphis 1-0 W1 1-0 0-0 0-0 1-0 0-0 1-0
Indiana 1-0 W2 1-0 0-0 0-0 1-0 0-0 1-0
Last Meeting
Memphis Indiana
Date Away Home Pts Reb FG% Pts Reb FG%
3/22/14 IND 71 MEM 82 82 47 44.0 71 35 36.5
Player Stats
Previous Matchup
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Memphis M. Conley 21 60.0 2
Indiana L. Stephenson 15 54.5 1
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Memphis Z. Randolph 13 4 9
Indiana L. Stephenson 8 0 8
Assists Player  
Memphis M. Conley 4
Indiana G. Hill 5
Season
Points Player Total FG% FTM
Memphis M. Gasol 102 55.1 26
Indiana D. Sloan 96 43.2 22
Rebounds Player Total Off Def
Memphis M. Gasol 50 14 36
Indiana R. Hibbert 45 11 34
Assists Player  
Memphis M. Conley 23
Indiana D. Sloan 29
Quickchart Matchup
Memphis Off vs  Indiana Defense
105.0 Points For
91.0 Points Against
52.4 FG%
38.2 FG%
33.0 Reb
42.0 Reb
Indiana Off vs  Memphis Defense
103.0 Points For
101.0 Points Against
46.9 FG%
45.3 FG%
42.0 Reb
47.0 Reb