How about some Indiana Pacers links to get through your Saturday evening?
This is brought to you by Pacers.com and discusses the magical number being 5 for the Indiana Pacers to clinch the Central Division. I’ve felt like all along this season is Central Division title or bust. If the Pacers couldn’t pull off winning the division, then this season wouldn’t have been as good as it has been. Hard to believe that in five Pacer wins or Chicago Bull losses, the Pacers will earn their first division title in a decade. Just think about where this Pacers team was four years ago, not even making the playoffs, and just looking like a talentless team. Now there’s been two straight seasons of All Star appearances. There’s the great team camaraderie happening here. Guys are improving all around. Look at Paul George. Look at Lance Stephenson. There’s the leadership of David West, who the Pacers will have to look at hard to keep around. I think he wants to stay here, so hopefully that’s an easy process. It will probably come down to some money, but West should be welcomed here for the foreseeable future. These next games can really define what this season is all about. The Pacers need to put the gears in motion first by finishing up this Western Road Trip and then continue the trek through the final month of the season.
The good people at 8 Points 9 Seconds always have great articles up, and I should use them as inspiration for this site. This article talks about the possibilities of who the Pacers could face in the first round. I think this will be tough against any of the possible opponents. You are looking at the Chicago Bulls, Atlanta Hawks, and Boston Celtics. I would say the least favorable match up right now is the Boston Celtics. They just find ways to win even in their injured state. That’s a group that has been playing together, and with Kevin Garnett and Paul Pierce, you know they’ll be right there. Against the Celtics, I think it would be a lovely physical match that could really wear down the Pacers, and hurt them going into the next round. That’s if they can get out of the first round. Once again, getting out of that first round is a goal along with the divisional title. I think that would be such a disappointment if the Pacers fall in the first round. That’s why they have to get things going right now, and be ultra prepared for whoever they might face.
Breaking down what happens in the playoffs without Danny Granger. I do think he will be missed at that point of the season. Paul George disappeared a bit during the playoffs last season, and if that happens again, the Pacers aren’t going anywhere. With as good as George has been, the test is always what are you doing post season wise. Just ask Peyton Manning about that. You could be the greatest regular season player ever, but if you falter after that, you’re not anything. Paul George will have to continue his emergence in the post season. I would look for an active David West as well. He’s been solid so many times in the regular season that the Pacers should look for him even more come playoff time. He could really present problems for teams if he’s scoring and being the beast that he has shown. Even Roy Hibbert will be looked upon as someone who needs to have a great post season effort. But the absence of Granger means there’s not that other scoring option and generally tough presence out there. All active Pacers need to step up and show that while Granger is missed, this is the team that can go forward.