Despite some leaked games and preseason teasers, the NBA schedule has remained largely elusive into the third week of August, but two months ahead of the regular season tipoff on October 18, the league wide schedule has been released including 82 contests featuring the Indiana Pacers.
The October 18th opening night showcase will take place between four teams (Philadelphia/Boston & LA Lakers/Golden State) leading into the Pacers and the rest of the league to kickstart their season the following night, Wednesday the 19th with Indiana facing the Washington Wizards.
It’s the eighth time in the last 10 years the Pacers will open things up at home, getting an interesting slate of games to open things up. Not only will be three straight game at Gainbridge Fieldhouse, but it will be three straight against lottery teams, giving a young Pacers team an interesting test to start the year, facing off against the San Antonio Spurs and Detroit Pistons on Friday and Saturday.
Unfortunately for Indiana’s win loss record, even a successful start will carry over into a challenging set of games to follow, a five-game road trip against Philadelphia, Chicago, and a pair of games in Brooklyn. Indiana’s lone nationally televised game will take place in this stretch, a Friday October 28th game against the Wizards on ESPN.
Heading into November, the Pacers will have their first of four four-game homestands to round out 2022, all season longs as the league heavily splits Indiana’s home/away schedule to start the year. Tough games against Miami, New Orleans, Denver, and Toronto will be followed by two road games in Charlotte and Houston before four more home games, two against Orlando and one each against Minnesota and Brooklyn.
Following the Circle of Lights celebration on November 25, the Pacers will embark on an absolutely brutal seven-game West coast swing. The Pacers will be have a tough back-to-back against the Los Angeles Clippers and Lakers on the 27th and 28th before heading north to Sacramento to face Domantas Sabonis and the Kings.
After facing the Utah Jazz on December 2, Indiana will have another difficult back-to-back against the Portland Trail Blazers and Golden State Warriors before heading back to the Midwest to wrap things up against the Minnesota Timberwolves. The ensuing four game home stand will feature Golden State’s lone Fieldhouse visit on December 14 before some more road action sends Indiana to the Garden to face Malcolm Brogdon and the Boston Celtics.
That will be the start of a tough schedule run for the Pacers, closing out 2022 with seven of eight games against playoff teams, including home matchups against the Atlanta Hawks on December 27 and an early New Year’s Eve tip against the Clippers. In January, the Pacers will play seven home games, their first of the year vs. the Chicago Bulls on January 24 and Milwaukee Bucks on January 27, both following a four game West-ish swing including a challenging back-to-back against the Denver Nuggets and Phoenix Suns.
A home friendly schedule will keep the Pacers in Indianapolis for much of February, kicking things off with a three game homestand featuring games against the Lakers (February 2) and Kings (February 3). Boston will visit Indy for the only time on February 23. Indiana will hit the road following that game and spend much of March away from the Fieldhouse, playing 11 of 14 games on the road with only a pair of matchups against Philadelphia (March 6 & 18) and Houston (March 9) breaking up the traveling.
Returning home on March 27, the Pacers will close out with five of seven at home, starting with the Dallas Mavericks on March 25 and wrapping up against the Pistons on April 7. An April 9 road meeting against the New York Knicks will wrap things up for the Pacers, at least in the regular season should any higher asperations reveal themselves as the schedule progresses.
Feel free to dive deeper into the schedule here.
the fun begins in 63 days.— Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) August 17, 2022
In addition to the lone ESPN game on October 28th, the Pacers will be showcased on NBA TV three times; at Brooklyn on October 31, at Portland on December 4, and at Boston on March 25, though that’s always subject to change as the season progresses.
The Pacers will have 14 back-to-backs on the year and will have three (well, four) games against the same team with no additional travel, at Brooklyn in October, vs. Orlando in November, at Detroit in March as well as the Los Angeles back-to-back in November.
All in all, it’s hard to look at this schedule and find the more favorable and less favorable stretches due to the uncertainty about what kind of win total the Pacers will be capable of. The three game opening stretch is particularly fascinating in that regard, but following that up with a tough road stretch, as well as splitting the 2022 portion of the schedule almost exclusively into home stands and road trips will no doubt provide their own challenges in terms of win/loss consistency no matter the level of the opposition.
On the bright side, Pacers basketball within sight, especially with training camp six weeks away and the preseason portion beginning on October 5, two road games against the Charlotte Hornets and New York and two home games against New York and Houston prepping Indiana for the start of the 22-23 season.