April has been a rough month for the Philadelphia 76ers.
Surprisingly still alive in the postseason race, the struggling Sixers will play their final home game of the regular season tonight versus the playoff- bound Indiana Pacers at Wells Fargo Center.
Philadelphia is just 2-6 this month and dropped its second straight game with last night's 113-100 loss against the Dwight Howard-less Orlando Magic in central Florida. Jrue Holiday paced the Sixers with 18 points and eight assists, while Lou Williams, Andre Iguodala and Thaddeus Young all netted 15 points in defeat.
The 76ers were outrebounded, 46-30, but shot 50 percent from the floor.
"We said going into the game that rebounding the ball was going to be key, and we didn't do it," 76ers head coach Doug Collins said.
Collins' squad currently sits in a tie for the seventh spot in the Eastern Conference playoff race with the New York Knicks -- two games clear of the ninth-place Milwaukee Bucks with six to play. The Sixers are just 11-20 since their hot 20-9 start to the compressed season.
After hosting the Pacers, Philly will close out the regular season with five straight games on the road against Cleveland, Indiana, New Jersey, Milwaukee and Detroit. The matchup with the Bucks on April 25 could play a significant role in the postseason standings.
While April has been a house of horrors for the Sixers, Indiana has played very well through the first 10 games this month (9-1).
The Pacers, seeded third in the East, posted their fifth straight win with Monday's 111-88 victory versus Minnesota. David West led the way with 22 points and Danny Granger posted 19 for Indiana, which got 18 points from Paul George and 11 out of George Hill. Roy Hibbert recorded a double-double with 12 points and 11 rebounds for a Pacers team aiming for homecourt advantage in the opening round of the playoffs.
"We're coming out and trying to make the right play every single time and that's imperative for us," said West. "We want to continue the momentum we are starting to build and hopefully be playing some of our best ball in about a week and a half."
Indiana is three games ahead of Boston, Atlanta and Orlando in the conference and owns an 18-14 record away from home. The Pacers will close out the regular season with four games in the Hoosier State versus Milwaukee, Philadelphia, Detroit and Chicago.
The Pacers and Sixers have split a pair of matchups this season with each team holding serve as the host.