It's win and in for the Indiana Pacers

The Indiana Pacers have an opportunity to clinch a spot in the playoffs with a win on Friday or on Sunday.
Apr 9, 2024; Toronto, Ontario, CAN;  Indiana Pacers forward Obi Toppin (1) reacts after dunking for
Apr 9, 2024; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Indiana Pacers forward Obi Toppin (1) reacts after dunking for / Dan Hamilton-USA TODAY Sports

Coming into the season, the Indiana Pacers were hoping to get into the playoffs and get some experience in the postseason. They are an extremely young team with hardly any players that have experience playing on the biggest stage. The In-Season Tournament was the biggest stage most of these guys have played on.

That could change as soon as Friday night. All the Pacers need to do is win one of their final two games and they will be in the playoffs. They take on the Cavs on Friday before playing the Hawks on Sunday to finish off the regular season. They just need to win one.

Beating the Cavs could have them improve their seeding. The best they can do is the fourth seed, which would see them get home-court advantage in the first round. That would be a welcome sight for a young team trying to make some noise in the playoffs.

The Indiana Pacers have a chance to meet expectations for the first time in years

Coming into the 2023-24 season, Pacers fans expected Indiana to make the playoffs. After Tyrese Haliburton got hurt last year, that dream came to an end. But once this team started out playing so well in the In-Season Tournament, the expectations remained unchanged. The Pacers had to make the playoffs.

That was reinforced once the Pacers made the move to trade for Pascal Siakam. What would be the point of making a win-now move like that if they couldn't make the postseason? They gave up three first-round picks, Bruce Brown, and Jordan Nwora in order to make that move.

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Giving up that much for one player means that making the playoffs is the only way for this team to not be considered a massive failure. I fully expect the Pacers to achieve that goal.