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Indiana Pacers vs New York Knicks: Eastern Conference Semifinals betting odds and predictions

Publish Date: 05/05/2024
Fact checked by: Allan Howe

The New York Knicks survived what turned out to be a highly-entertaining, contentious opening-round series against the Sixers and will now move on to face what they hope is a weaker opponent in the Indiana Pacers.

Indiana gave the Knicks fits in the regular season, but those games did transpire before some key acquisitions improved New York's outlook on defense drastically. On top of that, the Pacers' defense continues to struggle despite a win over the Bucks, and likely should have performed a bit better given the injuries on the other side of the floor.

Will we see New York cruise into the Eastern Conference Finals here, or will the Pacers have their say in the series? Let's get into the best way to bet on the Pacers vs. Knicks in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

INDIANA PACERS VS. NEW YORK KNICKS FANDUEL ODDS

MONEY LINE

  • INDIANA PACERS: +210
  • NEW YORK KNICKS: -265

SPREAD

  • INDIANA PACERS +1.5 GAMES (+106)
  • NEW YORK KNICKS -1.5 GAMES (-130)

OVER/UNDER (TOTAL)

  • OVER 5.5 GAMES (-155)
  • UNDER 5.5 GAMES (+100)

 

INDIANA PACERS VS. NEW YORK KNICKS GAME 1 INJURY REPORT

INDIANA PACERS INJURY REPORT

  • TYRESE HALIBURTON - QUESTIONABLE - BACK
  • BENNEDICT MATHURIN - OUT FOR SERIES - SHOULDER

NEW YORK KNICKS INJURY REPORT

  • JULIUS RANDLE - OUT FOR SERIES - SHOULDER
  • BOJAN BOGDANOVIC - OUT FOR SERIES - FOOT

WHY INDIANA PACERS WILL WIN THE SERIES

It's hard to anoint the Pacers offense as "back" considering the Bucks team they wound up facing in the first round, but there were certainly some positives to take from that series.

Milwaukee had struggled on defense entering the series, and then wound up losing both Giannis Antetokounmpo and Damian Lillard, but sometimes just seeing the proverbial "one go in" can work wonders. The Pacers, who leaned heavily on their interior scorers in the regular season, continued to get some excellent production in the first round with a stunning 72.6% of their looks going down from within four feet. Their 3-point shooting lagged behind a bit, but given they took a high volume of looks from outside you might say they used that series as shooting practice, hoping to find their stroke ahead of some contentious series such as the one they find themselves in here.

They did manage to shoot admirably from deep in two of the first three games in that series, and when it was all said and done they were able to hold Milwaukee to 35.4% shooting from downtown. Given the Knicks' affinity for the 3, this will be a very important number to follow, and with the Pacers trending up in both of those areas they can certainly flip this series on its head from deep.

Indiana's rim defense has also been every bit as good as New York's, and in stealing away 51.5% of available rebounds in the first round against the Bucks this team can match the physicality of New York inside.

WHY NEW YORK KNICKS WILL WIN THE SERIES

Though the Pacers are an improving team on the glass, their latest step in the right direction did come against the 16th-best team in the league by the numbers. New York sat atop the league in rebounding rate this season and is coming off a commanding performance on the glass against the Sixers, which should do well to neutralize its opponent in the second round.

The Knicks have to be encouraged by the fact that the Pacers have been settling for so many outside shots and shooting a pedestrian 35.2% according to Cleaning the Glass after Philly did well to put a scare into them with near-40% shooting in their opening-round series. The Pacers were able to make in-roads against the Bucks inside, but the Knicks remain one of the hardest teams to score on around the rim and allowed just 55.7% of shots to fall there against Philly.

New York leaned on its defense to get it through its first-round series, and things should only look better against a Pacers team which should take a step back against a much stronger frontcourt. On the offensive side of the ball, the Pacers were pretty middling against the 3, ranking 10th among all teams which have played in the play-in and the playoffs to this point, and while they did struggle in this head-to-head during the regular season they should be confident in their offense's steady production in these games.

FINAL PACERS-KNICKS PICK & PREDICTION

I do think this series could be a contentious one for the Knicks, but I don't see it going to a Game 7 nor do I feel like paying up for the Over 5.5 Games on the series line.

I'm going to side with the games spread here with the Knicks. The regular season presented a bit of a problem for New York, sure, but the majority of those issues came when defending the 3 against the Pacers. All three games were played before the middle of February, however, when this team integrated OG Anunoby into the lineup and improved drastically against the outside shot.

Philadelphia did an excellent job on defense in the first round, and if not for that we'd have seen the Knicks run away with this series given their defense out-performed expectations. I think New York may surrender one insane shooting night to the Pacers in this series, but given the way Indiana defended a depleted Milwaukee team last round and given their continued struggles on defense, the Knicks are the clear-cut favorites here. Making it even better is the fact that the Pacers' offense should drop off against a stronger frontcourt.

FINAL PACERS-KNICKS PICK & PREDICTION: KNICKS -1.5 GAMES (-130)

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