The short-handed Indiana Pacers must be happy to be home after a winless road trip.
The Pacers try to end a four-game losing streak when they host the struggling Milwaukee Bucks.
Indiana completed an 0-4 West Coast trip with a 104-96 loss at Golden State on Saturday. Reggie Miller scored 23 points in his season debut for the Pacers, who were just 5-of-19 from beyond the 3-point arc.
“It would have been nice to win one or two of these games out West,” Miller said. “We’ll be OK, but we’ve got to play much better and harder than we’re doing now.”
Indiana has played well at home, where it will play six of its next nine games. The Pacers won three straight in Indianapolis before their road trip.
The dismal road trip knocked Indiana out of first place in the Central Division. The Pacers finally showed signs of struggling with stars Jermaine O’Neal, Ron Artest and Stephen Jackson suspended for their actions in the Nov. 19 brawl at Detroit. The Pacers are 3-5 since the suspensions.
Milwaukee has lost three straight and nine of 10. The Bucks have battled a multitude of injuries this season and starting forward Keith Van Horn may miss his second straight game.
Van Horn sat out Saturday’s 104-83 loss to San Antonio with a right ankle injury. Joe Smith returned after a three-game absence due to hip and groin problems and scored 10 points in 23 minutes.
“It seems like we get one healthy, one goes down,” Smith said.
Michael Redd managed just 15 points on 7-of-18 shooting in the loss. Redd is shooting only 38.5 percent in Milwaukee’s last seven games.
The Bucks were the only Eastern Conference team to win the regular-season series against the Pacers last season, winning three of four matchups.