Pacers On The Brink And Are Showing It
The Pacers had high expectations. They were arguable the best team during most of the regular season. For a long stretch, they held the NBA’s best win/loss record. Down the stretch they began to falter and got labeled as inconsistent. But they managed to balance out and made it to the Eastern Conference Finals where, like most predicted, they ran into a brick wall called the Heat.
It isn’t for lack of trying. The Pacers played some of their best basketball in Game 2 and 3. It is just with the Heat you have to cover all your bases and their are a lot of bases to cover. In Game 2 Lance Stephenson managed to shutdown LeBron James in the first half and Dwyane Wade also had an off night. It wasn’t enough, as Chris “Birdman” Anderson stepped up offensively to keep the Heat in the game long enough for Wade and James to kick it up a gear in the fourth quarter. Then in Game 3, the Pacers led most of the game, at one point they were up by 15 points, until Ray Allen drained four three-pointers in the fourth to give the Heat the big lead they needed to hang on for the victory.
Game 4 saw the return of an inconsistent ball club. Stephenson made the mistake of calling out James before the game. James responded on the court. Roy Hibbert, who struggled in the Pacers previous playoff series, did not put in one basket.
The Pacers have been making noise in the media about one-sided officiating as of late. However, here is the facts:
- The Pacers gave up late to lose Game 2 at home.
- They blew a 15-point lead at Miami in Game 3.
- They blame the Game 4 loss on the refs, even though Hibbert was non-existent at the basket.
This is a desperate team.
Coach Frank Vogel has remained cool and calm, perhaps in the hopes that it will begin to rub off on his team.
We can’t control calls. We’ve got to worry about what we (can control), our turnovers, our shot selection, our passing, our defense.
The Pacers point to the foul-shot disparity between the two teams in Game 4. However, the Heat lost Game 1 and there was a huge foul shot disparity. There was no complaints among the Heat players in the media. The Heat owned their loss.
The Pacers are simply on the brink and are showing it. They are like a person hanging at the edge of a cliff, looking for someone to blame for pushing them when the truth his they tripped over their own feet. And now if they make one mistake they will fall.
The Heat and the Pacers will play in Indiana tonight at 8:30 p.m. ET. You can watch it on ESPN. The Heat are the -2 point favorites to win according to Bovada.