Pacers vs Magic Picks, Prediction Today | Sunday, March 10

Pacers vs Magic Picks, Prediction Today | Sunday, March 10 article feature image

Myles Turner #33 of the Indiana Pacers dunks the ball during the second half in the game against the Orlando Magic at Gainbridge Fieldhouse. (Photo by Justin Casterline/Getty Images)

Pacers vs. Magic Picks, Prediction for Sunday, March 10

Sunday, March 10
6 p.m.
League Pass
Magic ML (-115)

Here's everything you need to know about Pacers vs. Magic on Sunday, March 10 — our expert prediction and betting picks for today.

The Orlando Magic were handed their first loss in six games when they wrapped up a three-game road trip in New York on Friday night, but now they'll return home, where they've been hard to beat. The Indiana Pacers, meanwhile, have lost their way over the last couple of weeks and have now lost a key rotation piece for the rest of the season in Bennedict Mathurin.

Tipoff between the Magic and Pacers is set for 6 p.m. ET on NBA League Pass. The latest Pacers vs Magic odds have Orlando as a 1-point favorite (-1), with the total set at over/under 229 at DraftKings Sportsbook.

Let's get to our Pacers vs. Magic prediction and Pacers vs. Magic pick.

Pacers vs. Magic Prediction

Pick: Magic ML (-115)

Pacers Betting Outlook

The Pacers have now dropped four of their last six and have lost Mathurin to a significant shoulder injury that will keep him out the rest of the season. A team that at one point looked assured of a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference entered the weekend in eighth in the conference standings, though there were some positives to take from its loss Thursday to Minnesota.

Indiana entered as a one-point favorite against Minnesota, so a two-point loss is tough to swallow in theory, but the Pacers did manage to have a great showing on defense. But a lot of that can be attributed to the fact that the Timberwolves shot under 29% from 3 and Minnesota has been in a shooting funk over the last couple of weeks. It's hard to expect those numbers to continue given the Pacers are just 21st defending the 3 this season and 28th over the last two weeks — so take that last game with a grain of salt.

What is concerning here for Indiana is the fact that its offense has sputtered three times in four games, mustering just one inspired performance, which came against the defense-averse Mavericks. While Mathurin's offensive impact hasn't been quite as large as you'd expect based on his estimated plus/minus numbers at Dunks and Threes, being down a great shooter and a 15 PPG scorer sparks some question about how this Indiana team will score against such a solid defense.

Magic Betting Outlook

Orlando boasts the second-best defense in the NBA over the last two weeks, improving upon its fourth-ranked defensive rating by nearly six points per 100 possessions during that span. The defense has carried this team to great heights, but as we've discussed above, the schedule is always worth looking at. While it's hard to argue the Magic won't have a huge edge defensively, perhaps they won't post a defensive rating under 106 points like they have against the Wizards, Hornets, Pistons, Nets and Jazz.

Given the schedule is likely inflating the Magic's defensive numbers just a hair, I'm going to opt for the season-long stats here, which still paint Orlando in a great light. The Magic are 11th against the 3 and 11th in defending the rim, which are the two areas the Pacers have done the bulk of their shooting. Indiana has made more of an effort to get to the rim the last two weeks, however, and has shot a poor 61% inside over that period. So against a strong defensive frontcourt, I don't think that will be a very fruitful endeavor for the Pacers.

Indiana's defense will be the area for Orlando to attack, and it's been incredibly mediocre all season long. Orlando remains one of the better team at converting looks from within four feet into points and has even begun to shoot the 3 much better at 38% over the last two weeks. That will put the Magic in great position here.

Pacers vs. Magic Picks, Odds

Sunday, Mar 10
6:00pm ET
Pacers Odds
-110o / -110u
Magic Odds
-110o / -110u
Odds via DraftKings. Get up-to-the-minute NBA odds here.

Even against inferior competition, the Magic did well on their road trip to keep a high defensive standard. Returning home well-rested, I expect them to come out on the winning side once again. They're 21-8 straight up in Orlando and 13-3 against the spread as home favorites this season.

I completely understand wanting to buy back in on Indiana after a rough spell, particularly after a near-win over the Timberwolves, but I still think there is cause for concern. I'm not sure how the Pacers will score on this Magic team that has been so dominant around the rim.

The loss of Mathurin, coupled with the potential return of Jalen Suggs for Orlando, should further turn the tides here. The Magic are the clear side to bet.

Pick: Magic ML (-115)

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