It's a big night in the Eastern Conference, as the Indiana Pacers host the Miami Heat and the Brooklyn Nets welcome in the Chicago Bulls on Friday. Those are four of the top five teams in the East, and the two games are part of a 12-game NBA slate on the evening.
The Heat (29-13) of course are on top of the East, 1½ games ahead of the New York Knicks. Miami is coming off one of their more impressive performances of the season on Wednesday, when they dominated Brooklyn 105-85 at the Barclays Center.
The Pacers (27-19) have scuffled a bit recently, losing three of four and currently sitting at fifth in the East. However, they did blow out the Detroit Pistons in their last outing and are 17-3 on their home floor. Indiana beat Miami 87-77 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on Jan. 8.
Over in Brooklyn, the Bulls look to continue their strong play on the road. Despite being without Derrick Rose, Chicago is a league-best 13-6 on the road and 28-17 overall, just 2½ games behind Miami in the East.
The Nets (27-19) are fourth in the conference and will be looking to rebound from that beat-down at the hands of the Heat. The Bulls won a close first meeting at the United Center in December.
Here's the full NBA schedule for Friday via SI.com (all times Eastern):
Miami Heat at Indiana Pacers, 7 p.m.
Cleveland Cavaliers at Detroit Pistons, 7:30 p.m.
Chicago Bulls at Brooklyn Nets, 7:30 p.m.
Milwaukee Bucks at New York Knicks, 7:30 p.m.