Raptors look to extend home streak, get Pacers next

The Toronto Raptors could be without Scottie Barnes when they go for their eighth consecutive home victory Wednesday night against the Indiana Pacers.

Barnes left Sunday’s 118-111 road loss to the Milwaukee Bucks in the second quarter with an injured left wrist and did not return.

Barnes did not practice Tuesday.

“The MRI was clear that he had, he is still pretty sore,” Raptors coach Nick Nurse said Tuesday. “I think he’s day-to-day. I think there is going to be another evaluation here this afternoon. But right now he is day-to-day and questionable.”

The 21-year-old is averaging 15.5 points, 6.9 rebounds and 4.7 assists for the Raptors this season. He was the NBA Rookie of the Year last season.

Barnes had five points in 13 minutes before his injury Sunday.

The Raptors (35-37) have lost their two meetings with the Pacers this season, both in Indianapolis.

The Raptors open an important four-game homestand in a three-way battle for the eighth, ninth and 10th places in the Eastern Conference with the Atlanta Hawks and the Chicago Bulls.

In Milwaukee, Fred VanVleet had 23 points and O.G. Anunoby added 22 for the Raptors, who had won their three previous games. Toronto missed a chance to move into eighth in the East ahead of the Hawks, who lost to the San Antonio Spurs 126-118 on Sunday.

“All these games are important to us, that’s for sure,” Nurse said Sunday. “I like, kind of, how we’re playing. … Hopefully, we can just keep building on that.”

Toronto led 95-89 entering the fourth quarter against Milwaukee.

“There were just two little probably bad stretches,” Nurse said. “In those stretches, they kind of got a couple of at the rim … a couple of and-ones. We just kind of lost our rim protection, and then kicked out and made a couple 3s after we kind of got that fixed. Give them credit, they made a couple big ones down the stretch when they needed them.”

The Pacers (32-40) squandered a 21-point second-quarter lead Monday in a 115-109 road loss to the Charlotte Hornets.

The Pacers were outscored 19-4 over the final six minutes at Charlotte.

Myles Turner and Buddy Hield each had 20 points for the Pacers in the opener of a four-game road trip.

“Believe me, an opportunity lost for sure,” Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said.

The Pacers, who have lost three of their past four games, turned the ball over 22 times resulting in 35 Hornets points.

“At that point, you’re just giving it away,” Carlisle said.

The Pacers played without Tyrese Haliburton (right ankle sprain), Chris Duarte (left ankle soreness) and Kendall Brown (right tibia stress fracture).

Pacers rookie Bennedict Mathurin returned Monday, 11 days after suffering a right ankle injury, and scored 18 points.

Mathurin scored 21 points when the Pacers defeated the Raptors 122-114 on Jan. 2.

Hield has played in all 72 games for the Pacers this season.

“He is very prideful about playing,” Carlisle said. “He hates missing games, plays hurt, and is very unique. He has a tremendous level of endurance, stamina, and he works at it. He’s also wired to love the game and he just loves to play.”