NBA

Pacers vs. Knicks: Betting Picks and Prediction for Game 5

Aidan McGrath
Aidan McGrath@ffaidanmcgrath
Pacers vs. Knicks: Betting Picks and Prediction for Game 5

The Indiana Pacers and New York Knicks are putting on one heck of a show in the Eastern Conference Semifinals. The Knicks surged out to a two-game lead at home to kick the series off, but the Pacers evened the score right back up during their own homestand. Both teams will head back to Madison Square Garden for Game 5 of this nail-biting competition.

There is a lot on the line for each of these teams. The Pacers made the playoffs after missing the postseason in three consecutive years. Their previous five postseason appearances all ended in the first round, and they haven't made it to the Eastern Conference Finals since the 2013-14 season. The team hasn't won an actual title since the 1972-73 season -- six years after the franchise's inception.

Funny enough, the Knicks haven't won a title since that same 1972-73 season. The Knicks won the NBA Finals that year while the Pacers took down the ABA. They've faced an even rougher postseason drought than the Pacers and haven't reached the EC Finals since the 1999-2000 season.

No matter which team wins here, they'll be snapping a pretty brutal streak for their respective franchises. That makes it pretty easy to root for either team.

But which team will come out on top in Game 5? Can the Knicks continue the pattern of the home team winning? Or can the Pacers fight back to claim their first lead of the series?

Let's check out the NBA Odds on FanDuel Sportsbook to see how the market thinks this one will shake out.

All NBA odds come from FanDuel Sportsbook and may change after this article is published.

NBA Playoffs Betting

Pacers-Knicks Betting Odds

Date and Time: Tuesday March 14th, 8:00 p.m. ET

Spread: Knicks -2 (-112)

Total: 217

Moneyline:

  • Pacers: +110
  • Knicks: -130

Pacers vs. Knicks Advanced Stats Breakdown

nERD via numberFire. Adjusted offensive/defensive ratings and pace via DunksAndThrees.

  • Indiana Pacers:
    • nERD: 56.3 (14th)
    • Adjusted Offensive Rating: 120.1 (2nd)
    • Adjusted Defensive Rating: 117.9 (24th)
    • Pace: 102.1 (2nd)
    • Against-the-Spread Record: 44-35-3
  • New York Knicks:
    • nERD: 61.3 (7th)
    • Adjusted Offensive Rating: 117.4 (8th)
    • Adjusted Defensive Rating: 112.8 (8th)
    • Pace: 95.7 (30th)
    • Against-the-Spread Record: 44-37-1

Pacers vs. Knicks Best Bet

Indiana Pacers Moneyline (+110)

While neither team has broken serve on the road yet in this series, I like the Pacers' chances of pulling off the first road victory in Game 5.

The Knicks are, unfortunately, pretty banged up right now -- as they were for much of the regular season, as well. While we would have loved to see them at 100% in the postseason, the stars just haven't aligned. They've already ruled out each of OG Anunoby, Julius Randle, and Mitchell Robinson for Game 5, and only Anunoby seems like he has a shot to return this postseason.

Due to all of their injuries, the Knicks have relied heavily on their starters. Josh Hart remarkably played 48 minutes in each of Games 1 and 2, and most of the team's starters were playing heavy minutes in those games, too. A Game 2 foot injury limited Jalen Brunson to 32 minutes that night, but he still averaged 41 minutes per game in Games 1 and 3. Donte DiVincenzo had been going for 44 minutes per game, and even Isaiah Hartenstein was averaging 38 minutes in the first three games after averaging 25.3 minutes per game in the regular season.

That approach worked pretty well when needed for New York during the regular season. They finished the year as the eighth-best team in the NBA, according to numberFire's schedule-adjusted metrics, while playing at literally the slowest pace in the league. When they were able to exert control over the speed of the game, their heavy-minute players could more comfortably stay in the game.

In stark contrast, the Pacers averaged the second-fastest pace of play throughout the regular season. The Knicks have mostly managed to contain them in the series, but they really seemed worn down in Game 4. The Pacers jumped out to a 34-14 lead in the first quarter before entering the half up 69-41. It was a decisive enough lead that Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau finally gave his starters a rare breather, and it could have been the first sign of the Knicks' endurance faltering.

The Knicks' shooting really fell off in Game 4. As a team they shot for a 38% eFG% after averaging 61% in Games 1-3. Jalen Brunson in particular could be slowing down. The star shot for a 54.3% eFG in the regular season and had been shooting 45.7% so far this postseason. Over his last two games, however, he has managed just a 37.2% FG%. If he doesn't bounce back, the Knicks could have trouble matching the Pacers on the scoreboard.

Pacers vs. Knicks Prop Bet

Tyrese Haliburton Over 20.5 Points (-115)

Tyrese Haliburton disappeared in Game 1 of the series, but he has been a constant scorer since then. While he somehow took only 6 shots in that first tilt, he's averaged 20 field goal attempts per game since then and is posting 29.7 points per night.

Even in a road matchup, his 20.5-point line seems low. The two-time All-Star actually averaged more points per game on the road (21.1) than at home (19.3) during the season. He has topped that mark in three consecutive games. Notably, OG Anunoby has missed the last 2.5 games and will miss tonight's tilt, as well.

In stark contrast with what we've seen from New York's key players, Haliburton has exceeded 40 minutes in just 1 of his 10 games this postseason. He's averaging only 35.4 minutes per game so far, which could be explained by the back and ankle injuries he's tagged with on the Pacers' injury report. Fortunately, Sunday's blowout win allowed the Pacers to pull him after just 27 minutes, meaning he should be better-rested heading into Game 5.

In a must-win road game, I think the Pacers could keep him on the court longer than usual as they try to flip the script and take a series lead back to Indiana. And if the Knicks are wearing down like we discussed in the previous section, he could have an easier time driving to the hoop and finding open shots around the arc.


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The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author’s advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.