The dust has settled on the Indiana Pacers and their playoff run, but it was quite the run. Time to put this post season in perspective. It was quite the run for this team that I don’t think many people predicted would go. I thought that for a successful season after winning the division title was that this Pacers team needed to get to the Conference Finals. I didn’t know what they would do there, but getting there was quite the achievement. They got to the Conference Finals, and gave the Miami Heat all they could handle for a second straight year before falling down. Plenty of good things to talk about here in the post season.
- Paul George comes alive in the first game of the post season with his triple double. When you look at how Paul George didn’t come to play last post season, then ends up with a triple double to kick off the post season was quite the start to that. He was quite good throughout the playoffs, and that start really set up what was going to happen. Paul George stepped up plenty of times in this post season, and that start was what was expected of him.
- 8-1 at home for the Pacers. All 8 wins were by double figures, which shows what kind of home court advantage the Pacers had. They were a much better team at home, and that showed up. The one loss came to said Heat, and was a blow out loss. But most of the time, the Pacers came to play at home, and showed just what they’re capable of when all things are clicking.
- Roy Hibbert kept the Pacers alive in that Miami series. I think without Hibbert being strong in that Miami Heat series, they don’t end up in game seven. The Pacers actually made it a point to get the ball to Hibbert at different times. But with his offense and defense, he really stepped up his game. Grabbing rebounds and putting those rebounds back in on the offensive end was huge. Having him in the middle to stop guys from getting easy buckets was huge. Hibbert was the way a center should be, and if he can get that going next season from the start, we’ll see two All Stars on this Pacers team.
- Lance Stephenson was the X-Factor. There were times of GOOD Lance, and there were times of BAD Lance. I thought BAD Lance got caught up in a few moments with the Heat, but for the most part, he was a difference when he was able to. Who knows if he’ll be the starting guard come next season, but I believe he will be if all things go the way they should.
- The Pacers just put together that post season to get the fans back behind them. The fans were on board, especially in that Conference Finals. We wanted to Beat the Heat so badly, and get back to the NBA Finals for only the second time. What a feeling that would have been. But fans should get used to this because this Pacers team has something built that should last for the next few seasons. We can expect these type of runs from here on out.