NBA Indiana Pacers

5 Keys To Indiana Pacers’ 2014 Title Hopes

1 of 6

Indiana Pacers: 2014 NBA Champs?

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Heartbreak brings desire, and no one knows that more than the Indiana Pacers.

The last two seasons have been hard on the Pacers as they have been eliminated by the Miami Heat both years. Now, they will hopefully enter this postseason fully healthy to see what this team is capable of.

Paul George has blossomed into a star almost overnight, and Roy Hibbert is the best defensive player in the NBA right now. Their frontcourt of Hibbert and David West is one of the best in the league, and the signings of Luis Scola and Andrew Bynum makes the Pacers the team to beat in the Eastern Conference come playoff time.

The players have another season under their belts and will not be shellshocked like they were in Game 7 last year. This team was built to beat the Heat, and this is the year they finally get over that hump. There is no team in the Western Conference that can match their intensity on the defensive end, so that’s why the 2014 championship will be handed to the Pacers.

Here are my five keys to the Pacers' title hopes.

2 of 6

5. Danny Granger

Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

I say Granger because he is a valuable weapon off the bench. You put him with Bynum, and you have a great inside/outside tandem -- and this is still just the Pacers' second unit. Watch out league.

3 of 6

4. Andrew Bynum

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

I know he is recently signed, but he brings a toughness that the Pacers need if they are going to knock off the Heat this year. He is an ex-All-Star and two-time NBA champion. He is a reserve, but will play a big role in the Pacers winning the championship this year.

4 of 6

3. Chemistry

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

This team has been together for the better part of three seasons. They know each other well and really seem to respect each other's game. This is the blueprint on how championships are won, and the Pacers have one of the tightest collections of players in the league.

5 of 6

2. Defense

Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Name a team that can lock down every player on the court with such ease? They are the best at what they do, and they just added another rim-protecting big man to the team.

6 of 6

1. Heartbreak

Steve Mitchell-USA TODAY Sports

Watching the team that eliminated you go on and win the championship will hurt. The Pacers are building off that pain and can't wait to catch the Heat again. They have another season of experience under their belts, as well as a healthy team this time around.