Betting on NBA teams in transition takes a lot of practice and skill. That’s the thing to remember with the Indiana Pacers. You needn’t avoid them on the betting slate entirely, but this is a team you need to watch before grabbing a handle of how you should bet for or against them. It’s the Pacers’ play style that molds this must follow approach. They are in the middle of a systematic overhaul. [+]

They have ditched traditional lineups and half-court offensive sets in favor of smaller personnel combinations, extra spacing, more three-pointers and increased speed. This is a solid decision in today’s NBA, but the style takes some time to perfect. The Pacers are in that gray area, where their offense is on some nights and off other nights. So that means there is extra value in understanding their opponents and the type of defense they’re running.

Good defenses are more likely to disrupt the Pacers’ more than usual. Bad defenses will provide Indiana with a nice offensive boon. This is logic you can apply to any kind of game bet—be it monelyline, against the spread or over/under wagers.

Indiana Pacers Next Game

As always, invest the most time in the Pacers’ next game before betting on them. Review the opponents and take a look at some of their past scores. Evaluate, evaluate, evaluate…. [+]

Evaluate not only their offense, but their defense. Detect an identity. Look at everything you can possibly think of, within reason of course, and then place your bets. It sounds intimidating, but it’s not. All you really need is to know their next opponent, which is why we’ve dropped it here for you.

My Team's Next MatchIndiana Pacers

Indiana Pacers Regular Season Schedule

Big-picture alert. Take a gander at the Pacers’ forthcoming schedule. Preparation is the key to a bettor’s success, and planning ahead puts you in the driver’s seat. [+]

You’ll need to be prepared for things to change at a moment’s notice, as there is no predicting injuries or inexplicable rest days. But a team’s style of play and overall identity doesn’t shift much—not even after they incur the biggest of setbacks or changes. Understanding them and how they play is an invaluable baseline you can use to make successful bets long before the game in question even tips off.

Results / FixturesIndiana Pacers

Indiana Pacers Standings

Like every other Eastern Conference team, the Pacers’ place in the standings is most important for betting futures. It can help you a great deal in advance of some individual games. [+]

For example, if the Pacers are playing a team that’s, by far, inferior or superior. But it’s most useful when trying to decide how far you think they can get in the playoffs.

So many of the East’s teams are close together, which can make forecasting first-round matchups extremely hard, if not impossible. But you’ll always have a rough idea of around two to four opponets they could face, and you can map out their theoretical path to the Eastern Conference Finals and NBA Finals from there.

Are they genuine threats to win the East? Can they actually contend for an NBA title? A lot goes in to answering those questions, but understanding where the Pacers sit relative to the rest of the East—as well as the rest of the league—is a great place to start.

StandingsIndiana Pacers

The Impact of Paul George and Myles Turner

Take the Pacers' future seriously. Very seriously. Paul George is already a superstar, and rookie Myles Turner is way ahead of schedule. That's important, because today's NBA is built for the both of them to dominate.

The NBA values wings who can defend, shoot and play multiple positions, and that's actually what George does. The league is also a field day for big men who can protect the rim and shoot threes. They are, as Kevin Durant of the Oklahoma City Thunder once pointed out, the unicorns of basketball. And the Pacers have one in Turner. That's huge.

Pair the most polished possible versions of both of them together, and the Pacers become a real Eastern Conference contender. And because Turner is ahead of schedule, that's happening soon. This is a fact—not a theory, but a fact—you can use to steer bets on how many games they'll win, whether or not they'll make a play for the Eastern Conference throne, and whether they're on the brink of a championship.

Moving forward, at least for the next year or two, the Pacers should only be viewed as long-shot championship bets. Throw down a small wager if you're so inclined. The real money rests in betting on their win total. You'll have a sense right away if places like TopBet or Bovada, among other sportsbooks, are overvaluing or devaluing how devasting George and Turner can be.

In about a year or two, you can start getting serious about betting on their championship and conference odds.