The Indiana Pacers earned the top overall seed in the Eastern Conference for the 2014 NBA Playoffs. And then they proceeded to immediately get out-played in a opening loss to the Atlanta Hawks.

Star center Roy Hibbert says it starts with him, but the Pacers as a whole have been a shell of their formerly dominant selves for the past couple of months. They are just one story-line in a Monday full of three intense NBA Playoff games.

We’ve got the action covered here as we break down and pick all three matchups:

Atlanta Hawks (8) @ Indiana Pacers (1) – 7:00 PM ET

Things could get real interesting real fast in these young 2014 NBA Playoffs, as the Pacers enter game two facing a disastrous 0-2 hole. The key will be center Roy Hibbert actually showing up, as he’s been absent on offense and also oddly hasn’t been overly effective on defense, either.

Atlanta point guard Jeff Teague had his way with Indiana in game one, slicing and dicing his way to 28 points. That can’t happen again. George Hill and the Indiana guards have to play better defense on the perimeter and Hibbert needs to return to his shot-altering status. If the Pacers can buckle down a bit and start looking like the elite defensive squad they were earlier in the year, they should find a way to get the series back to 1-1.

Pick: Pacers 101, Hawks 84

Brooklyn Nets (6) @ Toronto Raptors (3) – 7:30 PM ET

The Nets stormed into Canada in game one, taking a 1-0 series lead with a 94-87 win. Brooklyn got the win with veteran experience and gutted out the tough road win despite going just 4-of-24 on threes. They also withstood a hot start from Toronto center Jonas Valanciunas, as well as a steady game from Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry.

Heading into game two, it’s going to be much of the same for the Nets. They’re the more experienced team and matchup extremely well with the Raptors. Toronto could actually be in even more trouble if the Nets start connecting on their outside shots, as well.

If the Raptors are to avoid an 0-2 hole early on, they’ll need DeMar DeRozan (3-of-13 shooting in game one) to show up. Whether or not they win could also be impacted by forward Amir Johnson’s healthy, who labored through an ankle injury in game one and isn’t expected to be 100% for game two. In the end, experience could prevail yet again.

Pick: Nets 99, Raptors 92

Washington Wizards (5) @ Chicago Bulls (4) – 9:30 PM ET

The Wizards travel back to Chicago to take on the Bulls in Monday night’s final NBA contest. Washington stole game one with a solid 102-93 win on the road, overcoming a 13-point Bulls lead to earn the hard-fought win.

Chicago clearly enters game two at home with their backs against the wall, and will need better efforts from Joakim Noah and Carlos Boozer down low (combined for 21 points in game one), while scoring guard D.J. Augustin can’t afford to go 3-for-15 again.

While the Bulls will absolutely need to pick up their offense to tie this series up and one game apiece, it’s their defense that could use better execution. Chicago gave up an uncharacteristic 103 points on 48% shooting and will need to make the proper adjustments to pull the series back to a tie. Ultimately, Chicago is at home and is historically a very balanced and disciplined team. Look for them to get back to their bread and butter and earn the game two victory.

Pick: Bulls 90, Wizards 86

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