Far-Fetched Friday: The Indiana Pacers Will Be a Top-5 Seed in the Eastern Conference
By: Ryan Stein
Owners of the ninth-best record in the East last season, the Indiana Pacers haven't had a ton to celebrate during the past year. Between injuries and trading a star during the season, it was a difficult time to gain any real momentum toward the playoffs. With an off-season to regroup under new head coach Rick Carlisle, as well as an opportunity to get the roster healthy for the upcoming season, the Pacers will find a way to jump from their 9th seed finish last year, up to the top 5 in the Eastern Conference during the 2021-2022 campaign.
Welcome back to Far-Fetched Friday, where every Friday we give you a bold prediction that we believe will come to fruition. This Friday, we look at Indiana.
Many teams were hit with the injury bug during last season's condensed schedule, and Indiana was no exception. Domantas Sabonis and Malcolm Brogdon both missed double-digit games, Caris LeVert only played in half the team's games, and Myles Turner didn't play much more than LeVert. Add to that the season-ending injury to TJ Warren at the beginning of the year, and it's no wonder why the team was so disappointing. 4 of those 5 players are capable of scoring 20+ points per game, while the 5th player (Turner) is a contender for Defensive Player of the Year recognition.
The team has a ton of talent, and a proven championship-caliber coach in Rick Carlisle will be able to make the most out of this solid roster. While they may not have the star power to be legitimate contenders, they have the talent and cohesion to break through to the top 5 in the East. Indiana has themselves a nice basketball squad, and the NBA world will soon be reminded of that.
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