The three most important players in the Pacers vs. Bucks playoff series

The Indiana Pacers will be taking on the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round of the playoffs.
Jan 3, 2024; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton (0) dribbles the
Jan 3, 2024; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Indiana Pacers guard Tyrese Haliburton (0) dribbles the / Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
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The Indiana Pacers will take on the Milwaukee Bucks in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. They found themselves in this matchup after destroying the Hawks to get the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference. The Bucks lost their final two games of the season to fall into the third seed.

Milwaukee has had a very up-and-down season. They started the year as one of the favorites to win the NBA title. They still have a really talented team and have enough talent to win it all. But the Pacers aren't scared of them. Their track record has been quite good this season. Indiana has won four out of five games against them.

There are three players who are the most important ones in this series. Two of them are on the Pacers and one of them is on the Bucks. Let's start with one of the players who are on Indiana's roster, starting with the star point guard.

1. Tyrese Haliburton

No player tormented the Bucks more than Tyrese Haliburton. His step-back threes and crisp passing took them down in the In-Season Tournament and in the other regular-season matchups. Quite frankly, they had no answer for Haliburton. That was back when he was a First-team All-NBA candidate.

Unfortunately, Haliburton hit a big slide in the middle of the season. He still isn't quite as good as he was back then but he's pretty close. He finished off the season with 25 assists combined in his last two games. That passing is going to be key. His scoring wasn't quite as good though.

His scoring is going to be the key to whether or not the Pacers are going to be able to win this series. If he is able to be the 25-point 12-assist player he was at the beginning of the season in most of those matchups, they will be in a good spot. He was a dynamic player, controlling every aspect of the game.

Haliburton's ability to hit three-point shots is going to be something to watch in this series. Those deep threes are what open up the lane for everyone else to work. It also opens up his drive-and-kick game. He can still control the game with his passing and tempo when the shot isn't falling though.

No matter what happens offensively, Haliburton has to improve defensively. He's been really bad on the defensive end of the court. Teams have started attacking him in the pick-and-roll. Damian Lillard is going to do the same thing in this series too so Haliburton has to at least put up a fight.

The next player on the list is someone who wasn't involved at all in the first five matchups between these two teams.