2014 Indiana Pacers Predictions and NBA Futures Odds
by George Monroy - 10/13/2014
The Indiana Pacers needed only one breakaway layup during an exhibition game over the summer to decide their fate for the 2014-15 NBA season. Paul George, one of the few remaining bright spots on a team already in shambles after last year's near-epic collapse during the second half of the season and into the playoffs, suffered a horrific leg injury in a Team USA scrimmage that left many players and the NBA as a whole contemplating the validity of international play.
Indiana is now without its franchise star, and George is not guaranteed to return as the same explosive and dominant player her once was. The injury may be the beginning of a rebuild in Indiana after the squad spent three seasons near the top of the Eastern Conference, and it will certainly cause the Pacers to struggle if not completely fall apart over the upcoming season. Let's take a closer look at Indiana's 2014 futures odds with predictions and analysis.
2014 Indiana Pacer Betting Story Lines
Indiana entered the offseason facing quite a few questions about the squad's future, ranging from its coach's job security all the way down to Roy Hibbert and Lance Stephenson's contracts. 2013 was supposed to be the year that the Pacers finally challenged LeBron James and the Miami Heat for Eastern Conference supremacy, and while the team sprinted out to the league's best record early in the year, eventually making the Eastern Conference Finals, it struggled with chemistry issues on the court.
Even before the George injury, Indiana's outlook had gone from sure-fire contender to team in flux after experts began speculating that management would fire Coach Frank Vogel and look to trade Hibbert during the offseason. At that point the Pacers were probably no longer going to be a Top 3 squad in the East, and now, after the injury, they will probably struggle to even make the postseason.
2014 Indiana Pacers Additions and Departures
Key Additions: Rodney Stuckey, CJ Miles
Key Departures: Paul George, Lance Stephenson, Evan Turner
Indiana lost Stephenson during free agency, but in reality the Pacers did not make much of an effort to bring him back. That loss alone would have impacted the team, which had been known for having a weak bench over the last few seasons. Yet the squad also lost the former No. 2 pick in the NBA Draft, Evan Turner, who could have been a key role player, if not occasional starter, for the Pacers. The organization did acquire Rodney Stuckey and CJ Miles-two solid players that could help the team stay out of the lottery
2014 Indiana Pacers Futures Odds
NBA Title Odds: +10000
Eastern Conference: +5000
Win Total: O/U 33
Indiana's futures odds have little value for bettors looking to make a profit. Sure, George could return earlier than expect from his injury and play late in the year, but even his addition won't help the team in an ever-improving Eastern Conference. At the moment there are no less than five squads that will be better than a full-strength Pacers team. The only futures wager on the board with value is Indiana's win total. The bottom half of the conference is still notoriously weak, and even a hobbling Pacers group can still produce "over" 33 wins.
2014 Indiana Pacers Predictions and Futures Odds Picks
Indiana's championship window with its current roster probably closed with its disappointing loss to the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals. George is expected to miss the entire season and may never return to form as leg injuries tend to be the most difficult to recover from. Expect Indiana to be better than most people are projecting, yet they will still struggle throughout the season and miss the playoffs.
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