After 10 years without an NBA Playoff series win, the Indiana Pacers have ensured the wait was worth it this postseason. As the number six seed, the Pacers took down the Milwaukee Bucks in the First Round, then defeated the New York Knicks in the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

This latest victory set up a titanic series against the Boston Celtics. Should the Pacers win, they would reach the NBA Finals for the first time since the Reggie Miller days in 2000. While Indy is the underdog against the number-one seed Celtics, here are two reasons the Pacers will stun world with and upset the Celtics in the Eastern Conference Finals.

Kristaps Porzingis is out for at least Games 1 and 2

The Pacers' main weakness is the lack of an interior presence. During the regular season, Indianapolis finished 28th in total rebounds per game and 26th in defensive rebounding percentage. The Bucks could not take advantage of this shortcoming as star big man Giannis Antetokounmpo sat out the entire series with a calf injury. But the Knicks were aggressive on the offensive glass. In Game 5, New York grabbed 20 offensive boards, including 12 alone by center Isaiah Hartenstein. The Knicks finished the series at +19 on the offensive glass.

The Pacers were also last in points in the paint allowed. While Indy's interior defense has been much better in the playoffs, they still have the most points in the paint allowed of any of the four remaining teams. Fortunately for the Pacers, the Celtics were 27th in the NBA during the regular season in points in the paint and the team will be without seven-footer Kristaps Porzingis for at least the first two games of the series.

Porzingis suffered a right soleus strain in Game 4 of the First Round against the Miami Heat and has not played since. Even though he is not a huge factor on the glass, his presence creates opportunities for a team that finished fifth in offensive rebounding rate during the regular season. His floor spacing also opens up the floor for players like Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown to drive to the hoop, as the Latvian occupies the defense's tallest player.

With Porzingis out to start the series, the Pacers lack of an interior presence becomes far less of an issue and evens the playing field for the number six seed in the Eastern Conference.

Balanced scoring and the depth to match Boston's bench

While the focus in the playoffs is often on the star players, the Pacers' deep bench has helped propel Indy to the Eastern Conference Finals. The Pacers led the NBA in bench scoring during the regular season and seven players are averaging at least 10 points per game during the playoffs. In the decisive Game 6 against the Bucks in the First Round, T.J. McConnell and Obi Toppin both eclipsed the 20-point mark despite not featuring in the starting lineup. Against the Knicks in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals, the Pacers bench recorded 57 points.

Indy's deep bench also means that the Pacers' star players have been far fresher than their counterparts in the postseason. Tyrese Haliburton and Pascal Siakam are the only Indianapolis players to finish in the top 125 in the NBA in minutes per game while all five Celtics starters fall within that threshold.

The bench had long been a strength for the Boston Celtics. But the franchise sacrificed its depth to improve its starting lineup with trades for Jrue Holiday and Kristaps Porzingis last offseason. Now, Boston is 26th in bench scoring. The Pacers' depth has helped them win two lengthy series, and it could be the key to the team reaching the NBA Finals for the first time since 2000.