Predicting Disney: Indiana Pacers
Recently, Victor Oladipo has opted out of the NBA restart. However, that shouldn’t affect the Pacers too much as Oladipo was only available for 13 of their games. Rumors are he may still suit up for the team as the start of the seeding games begin to approach.
Indiana is a team that is limited offensively. That concerns me with their chances of competing in the NBA restart. The Pacers rank 22nd in points per game. Of the remaining 22 teams, the Pacers are only ahead of the Orlando Magic and the Sacramento Kings in that category.
Let’s look at, and predict, the eight-game schedule for the Pacers:
August 1st vs. Philadelphia 76ers: L
The Pacers will bring some swagger with them into this one. Indiana has won two of their three matchups with Philadelphia so far this season. However, in both of those wins against the 76ers, Joel Embiid was inactive. In the one game that Embiid was available to play against Indiana, he dropped 32, 11, and four in a 119-116 Philadelphia win. This Philadelphia team knows that they are better than their record, and they’re going to be set out to prove that.
August 3rd vs. Washington Wizards: W
Washington is a disaster. Without Bradley Beal, they don’t stand a chance against many.
August 4th vs. Orlando Magic: W
This one could go either way, but I’m going to give it to Indiana. I like Indiana’s cohesiveness over the fact that Orlando has slightly better players and depth. Nikola Vucevic is a modern NBA center that can shoot from three. Aaron Gordon isn’t very consistent, but every once in a while he makes the right plays to win his team the game. Indiana will get this one though, only by a hair.
August 6th vs. Phoenix Suns: W
The Pacers are the better team. Sabonis and Turner will be too tough for Phoenix to handle. At the end, T.J. Warren will be able to point his finger and laugh at his former squad. When the Suns and Pacers matched up earlier this year on Jan. 22nd, Warren was the game's leading scorer with 25.
August 8th vs. Los Angeles Lakers: L
LeBron has always made Pacers fans cry, and he will do the same again in this matchup. The duo of LeBron and Anthony Davis is way too tough for this Pacers squad to handle.
August 10th vs. Miami Heat: L
Miami is the better team. The NBA suspension was the break that the Heat needed in order to get healthy. Indiana will make this game tough as they will have just come off of an embarrassing loss to the Lakers. However, they will once again be outpowered.
August 12th vs. Houston Rockets: L
You’re comparing one of the worst three-point shooting teams in Indiana to one of the best three-point shooting teams in Houston. Nobody for Indiana can guard Westbrook or Harden. I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if the Pacers get blown out in this one, as the matchup is just a very poor one for Indiana.
August 14th vs. Miami Heat: L
The Pacers will want revenge after losing their first game against Miami in the NBA restart, but Miami will take this one as well. Once again, Miami has better players and is a better offensive team. The game will be close in the fourth quarter, but Sabonis will have several frustration fouls that will ruin Indiana’s chances as they try to come back and win.
Final Record: 42-31 (3-5 in Disney)