Greetings, basketball fans. Welcome back to our NBA playoff coverage here at Latest Basketball News. One of the games on tap from tonight’s slate features the Indiana Pacers (51-38 SU, 47-39-3 ATS) taking on the New York Knicks (54-34 SU, 47-40-1 ATS). 

Here is a look at which squad has the edge going into this matchup and why.

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Jalen Brunson


  • When: Monday, May 6, 2024
  • Time: 8:00 PM ET
  • Where: Madison Square Garden
  • Location: New York City, NY
  • TV: TNT

Indiana Pacers vs. New York Knicks Odds (Via DraftKings)

Indiana Pacers vs New York Knicks Odds

Indiana Pacers vs. New York Knicks – How We Got Here & Betting Trends

The Indiana Pacers squared off against the Milwaukee Bucks in the opening round of the playoffs. After dropping the series opener by a 109-94 margin, Indiana responded with three straight victories before a 115-92 loss in Game 5 sent the series to a sixth game. And with a chance to close out matters on their home court, the Pacers did exactly that, defeating Milwaukee to the tune of 120-98. 

In that contest, two bench players led the team in scoring. Obi Toppin scored 21 points and pulled down eight rebounds. T.J. McConnell added 20 points on an efficient 7-for-9 effort from the field. He knocked down both of his 3-point attempts and accumulated nine assists and four steals. 

Thanks to the performances of the reserves and four starters who scored in double figures, the Pacers are advancing to the semifinal round for the first time since 2014. 

“It means a lot,” McConnell said after the game. “Not getting into the playoffs since the bubble, not being able to advance since 2014, we take great pride in being able to advance and extend our season. Milwaukee has a great team, and, if I can be honest with you, I think our bench has taken a couple steps back competitive wise and I think tonight all of us went out there with the mentality we’re going to take it to another level.”

It is worth noting the Bucks were somewhat short-handed in that series. Giannis Antetokounmpo — who sustained a calf injury back on April 9 — missed the entire six-game set. Additionally, Damian Lillard sat out Games 4 and 5 with an Achilles injury. Injuries or not, though, the Pacers are moving on, and they hope to have the same success against a Knicks squad that is in the conference semifinal round for the second straight season. 

Meanwhile, the Knicks faced off against the Philadelphia 76ers in the first round. After failing to close out the series on their home court in Game 5, they faced the unenviable task wrapping up the series on the road. It appeared they were on their way to an easy victory early on as they jumped out to a 36-22 lead after the first 12 minutes of action.

However, Philadelphia did not go away quietly as they led 54-51 at the break, and the teams entered the final frame knotted at 83 apiece. As was the case in Game 5, this contest also came down to the waning moments. With the game tied at 111, Josh Hart hit a huge three-point shot that gave New York a 114-111 lead. Donte DiVincenzo sealed the win for the road team with a pair of three throws, enabling the Knicks to escape with a 118-115 win. 

Jalen Brunson led a starting unit in which all five players scored in double figures. He finished with 41 points on 13-for-27 shooting and a 12-for-16 effort from the charity stripe. He also had 12 assists and three rebounds. Brunson is now the first Knicks player to score 40 or more points in the last three games of a series since Bernard King accomplished the feat 40 years ago. He is also the first NBA player to score 40-plus points to close out a series in 35 years. The last player to do this was Michael Jordan, who did so against the Cleveland Cavaliers in 1989.

DiVincenzo added 23 points and seven assists while knocking down five of nine attempts from distance. OG Anunoby contributed 19 points and nine boards, while Josh Hart chipped in with 16 points, 14 rebounds (including six on the offensive glass), and seven assists. 

Until now, New York had not advanced to the semifinals in consecutive years since 1992-2000. Once again, armed with the home-court advantage, the Knicks are on a mission to prove that they are a championship-caliber team. 

Now that we have set the stage for this Game 1 showdown, let’s examine the betting trends for both sides. 

The Picks

The Spreads

Following their first-round 4-2 series win over the Philadelphia 76ers, the Knicks come into this matchup as a six-point favorite (per Here is a look at how both ball clubs have fared against the spread this season. 

  • The Pacers have failed to cover the spread five times in their last seven road games.
  • Indiana is 4-1 against the spread in its last seven May games.
  • In the last five games in which the Knicks have been the favorites, they are 1-4 against the spread. 
  • In its last 12 games at Madison Square Garden, New York is 8-4 against the spread.

The Knicks have been favored to win by at least six points 27 times this season. In those contests, their against-the-spread record is 16-10-1. Conversely, the Pacers are 7-6 against the spread in the 13 instances they were an underdog by at least six points. 

Although most of the trends suggest that the Knicks will cover, I am going in the opposite direction after watching New York struggle to put away a Sixers squad that was not at full strength. 

Prediction: Indiana Pacers (+6)


The projected over/under total for this matchup opened at 216 points. The line has moved to 217 points at the time of this writing (per Here is why going with the “over” is the smart choice. 

  • In the Pacers’ last 11 games, the total has gone OVER nine times
  • The OVER total has cashed in eight times in Indiana’s last 10 matchups against Eastern Conference opponents.
  • The total has gone OVER 15 times in the Knicks’ last 18 contests.
  • In New York’s last six clashes against Indiana, the OVER total prevailed four times.
  • The OVER total is 7-1 in the Knicks’ last eight home games.
  • Indiana and Boston average a combined 236.1 points per contest, which is 19.1 points higher than the projected points total for this matchup (217).
  • The opponents of these two teams have averaged 228.4 points per contest, which is 11.4 points higher than the projected total for this matchup. 

Prediction: OVER 217 points

Player Prop Bets

Pascal Siakam is the Pacers’ leading scorer in the playoffs and his 19-point outing in the series-clinching game against the 76ers was his highest scoring total since Game 2. He currently has -110 odds of scoring more than 20.5 points and -110 odds of finishing with less than 20.5 points. 

Here is a look at how his numbers stack up against the projected points total for this matchup. 

  • Siakam is averaging 21.8 points per contest during the regular season and playoffs.
  • In four games against the Knicks this season, he has averaged 19.5 points per contest.
  • During the postseason, he is averaging 22.3 points per outing.
  • Siakam has played against Eastern Conference teams 54 times this season (including the playoffs). In those contests, he is averaging 22.2 points per outing.
  • In 20 matchups against Atlantic Division opponents, the Pacers forward is averaging 20.8 points per game.
  • Over his last 10 outings, Siakam has averaged 21.5 points and 8.2 rebounds per contest, exceeding the points total for this matchup four times during that stretch.

Prediction: Pascal Siakam OVER 20.5 points

On the other side of this matchup, Jalen Brunson has posted 40-plus point performances in each of the Knicks’ last three games, which makes him the key player to watch for the home team. He currently has -110 odds of scoring more than 34.5 points and -110 odds of finishing with less than 34.5 points. 

Do Brunson’s numbers favorably compare to the estimated points total for this matchup? Let’s look at the tale of the tape to find out. 

  • Brunson is averaging 29.2 points per contest during the regular season and playoffs.
  • In three games against the Pacers this season, he has averaged 35.7 points per contest.
  • During the postseason, Brunson is averaging 35.5 points per outing.
  • Brunson has played against Eastern Conference teams 56 times this season (including the playoffs). In those contests, he is averaging 29.3 points per outing.
  • In 18 matchups against Central Division opponents, the Knicks’ point guard is averaging 32.9 points per game.
  • Over his last five outings, Brunson has averaged 36.7 points and 8.4 assists per contest, exceeding the points total for this matchup seven times during that stretch.

Prediction: Jalen Brunson OVER 34.5 points

New York Knicks Cheerleaders

James Tillman’s Indiana Pacers vs. New York Knicks Game 1 Picks

  • The Spread: Indiana Pacers (+6) Bleacher Nation
  • Over/Under: OVER 217 points (
  • Player Prop Bet #1: Pascal Siakam OVER 20.5 points
  • Player Prop Bet #2: Jalen Brunson OVER 34.5 points

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