Pacers Links: Pacers tip off playoffs against Hawks on Saturday night

David Manning-USA TODAY Sports

After the Pacers' reserves finished off the Magic to wrap up the regular season, all focus shifts to forcing the Hawks to play a little playoff basketball on the Pacers' terms.

The Pacers won their 56th game of the season with a strong effort from several reserve players to beat the Magic on Wednesday night. A strong third quarter put the Pacers in control as the veteran reserves simply stayed in their respective lanes to execute efficiently and avoid complicating the game in any way.

Now the Pacers move into playoff mode -- the time of year they were built for with the same championship aspirations they carried through the summer after coming up one game short in the Easter Conference finals last year. The schedule is set with  the Pacers tipping off post-season play on Saturday night in the ESPN game.

The last day of the season didn't disappoint as the Eastern Conference playoff bracket ended with some significant changes. While it appeared most teams would be trying to angle for a shot at the slumping Pacers, instead the Brooklyn Nets worked their way to the six seed. Toronto also held onto the third seed despite losing to Charlotte after the Bulls also lost to New York.

So in the end, it appears all of those contenders in the East were more willing to take their chances against the Miami Heat in the second round than the Pacers. Of course, the Nets also appeared to like their chances against the Raps, as opposed to the Bulls.

Now that the dust has settled on the East seeds, the Pacers will have the winner of a Washington/Chicago series waiting for them in round two. That is if they can get by the Hawks in round one.

Check out the links:

Pacers at Magic - Box score

Game Rewind: Pacers 101, Magic 86 | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Playoff Central 2014 | THE OFFICIAL SITE OF THE INDIANA PACERS

Pacers finish regular season with a win - Indy Star

Orlando Magic end season with a 101-86 loss to the Indiana Pacers - Orlando Sentinel

Pacers rest 3 starters, cruise past Magic 101-86 - AP

Pacers will begin playoffs against Hawks on Saturday - Indy Star

2014 NBA Playoffs first-round schedule announced - CBSSports.com

Knicks finish with 37 wins, just as projected by computer system that team made fun of before season | Ball Don't Lie - Yahoo Sports

Pacers 101, Magic 86: Orlando ends season with fourth straight loss - Orlando Pinstriped Post

Post-Game Grades: Pacers Use Headband Powers, Win Regular Season Finale - 8 Points, 9 Seconds

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