# Thread: Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

1. ## Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

Jeff's calculations over at USA Today show the Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far. The Celtics, Cavs, Lakers, and Magic have had some of the easiest. Because of this they are ranked higher (17) than the Nets, Miami, and many more. Power rankings don't mean much to me but at least this has a formula behind it.

http://www.usatoday.com/sports/sagarin/nba0809.htm

2. ## Re: Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

He puts a lot of weight in the schedule. I hate power rankings. In case you are wondering.

3. ## Re: Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

you know why the cavs lakers and celtics have the easiest schedules? Because they don't have to play against themselves.

If the Pacers were 23-2 instead of boston, their schedule would be considerably easier.

Meanwhile, Indiana has one fewer last-place team on their schedule than Boston does.

4. ## Re: Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

Originally Posted by Kstat
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you know why the cavs lakers and celtics have the easiest schedules? Because they don't have to play against themselves.

If the Pacers were 23-2 instead of boston, their schedule would be considerably easier.

Meanwhile, Indiana has one fewer last-place team on their schedule than Boston does.
It's not that simple. When you really take a hard look at certain team's schedules, you begin to see some teams do have a slight advantage at certain points in the season than other teams. Let's look at the Celtics, Lakers and our own Pacers, for example:

Celtics (23-2)

# East Coast Teams faced = 17
# West Coast Teams faced = 8
# of teams played +.500 = 10
# of teams played -.500 = 15
# Home games played = 15
# Road games played = 10
# Back-to-Back 2-game road sets = 3
Longest road stretch = 3 games
Longest home stretch = 5 games
# 07-08 playoff teams faced = 13 (9 @ home)

Lakers (21-3)

# East Coast Teams faced = 17
# West Coast Teams faced = 8
# of teams played +.500 = 11
# of teams played -.500 = 13
# Home games played = 15
# Road games played = 9
# Back-to-Back 2-game road set (2 or more games) = 3
Longest road stretch = 3 games
Longest home stretch = 5 games (w/2 stretches of 4 or more home games)
# 07-08 playoff teams faced = 12 (8 WC; 4 home, 4 road; 4 EC; 2 home, 2 road)

Pacers (8-16)

# East Coast Teams faced = 19
# West Coast Teams faced = 5
# of teams played +.500 = 17
# of teams played -.500 = 9
# Home games played = 10
# Road games played = 14
# Back-to-Back road games played (2 or more games) = 3
Longest road stretch = 4 games (w/two stretches of extended road games, 2 and 3 games apiece)
Longest home stretch = 2 games (X3)
# 07-08 playoff teams faced = 17

What the numbers show me is that the Celtics and Lakers have played a lot of -.500 teams at home, whereas the Pacers have played a lot of +.500 teams on the road. It's not easy to win many ball games under such adverse circumstances. Hopefully with the Pacers' schedule softening abit they can go on a winning streak and get closer to the .500 mark by Christmas.

Nuffsaid

6. ## Re: Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

He's right in pointing out that Cleveland, Boston and LA's excellent records does dampen their power ratings. Every time a team loses, its effect on other teams' power rating diminishes. The teams that beat almost everybody wind up playing most of their games against losers, so their power rating will be low.

7. ## Re: Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

Putnam,

No one's arguing (least not me). I'm just saying that the Celtics, Lakers and possibly the Cavs have all had it pretty good so far considering they really haven't faced too many obstacles, i.e., home -vs- road, EC teams -vs- WC teams, consecutive home -vs- consecutive road games, last season's playoff contenders -vs- this season's top teams or teams at +.500.

You have to factor in all of these things on top of a team that hasn't gone through alot of roster changes versus one that has and yet has the tougher schedule to date to boot.

The Pacers' record should be better (.500 at worst!). Let's hope they can get to that level before too long.

8. ## Re: Pacers have had the toughest schedule so far - USA Today

Originally Posted by Putnam
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He's right in pointing out that Cleveland, Boston and LA's excellent records does dampen their power ratings. Every time a team loses, its effect on other teams' power rating diminishes. The teams that beat almost everybody wind up playing most of their games against losers, so their power rating will be low.
Absolutely. There's also a sample size issue here.

Over time, the whole thing evens out. Plus the Pacers have managed to lose several easy games that they should have been able to win. Still, it's hard not to believe the team will start to peak right about the time the schedule gets easier.

What would be really funny is if Dun came back at the exact right time and we won 75% of our games to end the season. Regardless of whether his return had anything to do with it, it sure would look good in the "Jermaine O'Neal stat" (record with/without player X).

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