The Damian Lillard and Giannis Antetokounmpo pairing hasn't been as dominant as most expected it to be before the season. Still, the Bucks managed to secure the 3-seed for the NBA playoffs. They will take on an Indiana Pacers team with one of the best offenses in the league and an impressive duo (Tyrese Haliburton and Pascal Siakam) in their own right. In this article, we will explain everything that you need to know about that first-round matchup.

Where is Bucks vs. Pacers

As the 3-seed, the Bucks will have home-court advantage. Milwaukee plays its games at Fiserv Forum, and they will host Games 1, 2, 5, and 7. The Pacers will host Games 3, 4, and 6, and their games are at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana.

How to watch Bucks vs. Pacers

Game 1: Pacers @ Bucks: Sunday, April 21 at 7 p.m. ET – TNT

Game 2: Pacers @ Bucks: Tuesday, April 23 at 8:30 p.m. ET – NBA TV

Game 3: Bucks @ Pacers: Friday, April 26 at 5:30 p.m. ET – ESPN

Game 4: Bucks @ Pacers: Sunday, April 28 at 7 p.m. ET – TNT

Game 5: Pacers @ Bucks: Tuesday, April 30

Game 6: Bucks @ Pacers: Thursday, May 2

Game 7: Pacers @ Bucks: Saturday, May 4

Bucks storylines

It has been a weird year for the Bucks, to say the least. Milwaukee started the season with a 30-13 record, but their play wasn't up to their standards, and the team decided to get rid of head coach Adrian Griffin despite the impressive record. Doc Rovers was chosen as his replacement, and the hope was that Rivers would be able to fix Milwaukee's issues on the defensive end.

Milwaukee, who had been a good defensive team in years prior, still struggled on that end even with Rivers' wisdom. Offensively, Damian Lillard's fit alongside Giannis Antetokounmpo hasn't been as impressive as some thought it would be. Still, the team has the fourth highest-scoring offense in the NBA and is undoubtedly one of the best teams in the league.

The scary thing is that they haven't come close to reaching their full potential, and no one would be surprised if they reach new heights in the postseason. Milwaukee won the NBA Finals only three seasons ago, and a lot of the core from the championship team is still intact. Additionally, Lillard always turns his game up a notch in the postseason.

The team will need a boost from their star point guard because he may be without his running mate for the first round. While the team is optimistic that he will return sometime during the series, Antetokounmpo has already been ruled out of the beginning of the series against the Pacers because of the calf strain that he suffered at the end of the regular season.

The team will need to monitor the former MVP's injury closely. The Bucks championship window won't last forever, especially considering the regression we have seen from Khris Middleton in recent years. Returning too quickly from an injury like this could cause long-term problems for Antetokounmpo, though, which is a worrisome proposition considering that Antetokounmpo relies so heavily on his athleticism.

Pacers storylines

Like the Bucks, the Pacers have had issues on defense this year, but their offense is elite. That means this series will likely be an entertaining shootout. Tyrese Haliburton has emerged as arguably the best playmaker in the NBA, and he is surrounded by great shooters.

The team was clearly missing a piece early in the year, though, and adding Pascal Siakam at the trade deadline does a lot for their postseason outlook. The Pacers can outscore anyone, as they did during the regular season. Siakam is a free agent at season's end, though. Going on a deep run in the playoffs would do a lot in convincing the superstar to return to Indiana next year. If Antetokunmpo, a fellow power forward, is unable to return quickly, Siakam could be in for a big series.

The Pacers actually went 4-1 against the Bucks in the regular season, but all of those games came before they added Siakam into the fold. There is some tension built up between these two, though. Milwaukee's lone win against the Pacers came when Antetokounmpo had a career-high 64 points. The two-time MVP had a meltdown after the game because the Pacers didn't give the big man the game ball. It made for one of the most dramatic moments in a season filled with drama.

If Antetokounmpo is able to return, that incident will surely add a little fuel to the fire. Regardless, this series is going to be a high-scoring affair and one of the most entertaining series in the first round.