Indiana Pacers week ahead: Superstars and big markets

PORTLAND, OR - JANUARY 18: T.J. Leaf #22 of the Indiana Pacers drives against Zach Collins #33 of the Portland Trail Blazers at Moda Center on January 18, 2018 in Portland, Oregon.NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)
PORTLAND, OR - JANUARY 18: T.J. Leaf #22 of the Indiana Pacers drives against Zach Collins #33 of the Portland Trail Blazers at Moda Center on January 18, 2018 in Portland, Oregon.NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images) /
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Cory Joseph Indiana Pacers
BOSTON, MA – March 11: Cory Joseph #6 of the Indiana Pacers dribbles the ball while guarded by Kyrie Irving #11 of the Boston Celtics during a game at TD Garden on March 11, 2018, in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Adam Glanzman/Getty Images) /

Game 10: Boston Celtics – Saturday, 7:00 PM

A back-to-back. Ugh.

It’s at home, which is encouraging for the Pacers. But back-to-backs are already brutal enough. Against the Celtics number 1 rated defense (96.5 DRTG so far), having slow legs is a massive disadvantage.

Boston is just missing shots so far this year. Through their first six games, they rank 28th in field goal percentage at 41.4 percent. That won’t last all year, they have too much talent for that.

Amongst their starting five (Gordon Hayward, Al Horford, Kyrie Irving, Jaylen Brown, and Jayson Tatum) Hayward has the highest shooting percentage so far this season at 42.9 percent. That’s low. Unsustainably low. They will figure it out, and once they do, this team will be very dangerous.

Looking at last years Celtics-Pacers games, the type of game it was dictated the result. In the two Celtics wins, both teams scored under 100 points. In the two Indy wins, the Pacers scored over 100. If the Pacers can get their offense going, they should be able to win.

But that is a tall task. The Celtics defense is rolling, and their offense is only going to get better. The back-to-back seals the deal, this one could be too much for Indiana.

Prediction: Pacers fall to Celtics 101-92

Next. Victor Oladipo doesn’t need to be a battering ram for the Indiana Pacers. dark

This week will present some fun challenges for Indiana. A superstar, three big market oppnents, and a division rival. We will learn a lot about this team in the coming week.