by ErgSap on Flickr.

A Letter to the Indiana Pacers

Dear Indiana Pacers,

I grew up and have lived my entire life in Indiana. I remember years in the ’90s not by my age, grade in school, or world events but by the ending of each Pacers’ season. The most memorable gift I ever received was a Reggie Miller jersey for my seventh birthday in 1994.

In the ’90s, I lived and died by the outcome of those playoff games, spent the closing seconds of defeats (and one miraculous comeback for which this site is named) crying in the backyard. Sports were important then, probably a little too much so, and those teams embodied our state: tough, fearless, selfless.

By the mid 2000s, the team was successful, but it — and I — had changed. I kept tabs, checked box scores, watched occasionally, followed the draft. The off-court issues didn’t exactly help. It just wasn’t really the same.

Then, I came back.

You brought me back.

I’m not alone in feeling this way. The past two seasons were an absolute gift: a rare, unexpected, exciting journey reminiscent to an earlier time. We twice pushed the eventual champ to its absolute maximum. An underdog team without a superstar forced its heralded, big-market opponent to adapt to a rough, unrelenting style of play.

When this season started, it was obviously our year. Each game was an absolute symposium on team-oriented ball. You epitomized what we, the most basketball crazy state in the Union, loved about the game.

Then it happened.

You became Miami.

Our team suddenly morphed into what was despised most about our rival. Officiating was met with vociferous whining. The flopping reached new heights. A deliberate, team-oriented offense was replaced by stagnate, isolation ball. Is it any wonder we’ve been on such a slide?

I’m not Zach Lowe or Mark Stein. I’m no expert analyst. I can’t tell you the issues with the rotations or the lower percentage of corner threes the team is taking. But I’ve seen enough games over the past 20 years to know when guys are playing for their team rather than a new contract or national media attention.

That’s what is happening here, and it’s a shame. We could have been the team that proved basketball can still be played the right way at the highest level.

This was our year.

And it still can be.

… right?

Yours truly,
A fan

Tags: Indiana Pacers

  • Spot Light

    Dear Ronald,

    If there’s one thing that the Pacers have not done this year it’s become Miami.


    Fan of #1 Eastern Seed Miami Heat.

    P.S. – That stagnate isolation ball offense you speak of? Totally an Indiana thing, Miami has the most efficient offense in the league.

    • Michael Overbeck

      I would argue that we did become Miami. We just aren’t as good at playing Miami-style basketball as Miami is. We were good when we played Indiana ball.

      Also, why are you even here? Go away.

      • doctor

        Miami and Pacers are different teams and ”becoming miami” is just some nba-memes level bs.

        And ”Go away”, what kind of way is that responing to criticism. If you can’t discuss appropriately then you might just stay quiet.

        • Michael Overbeck

          Well Doctor, I have no issue discussing criticism from Pacers fans on a Pacers fan blog. I’m confused as to why he would go out of his way to move over to a pacers blog.

          If I wanted to handle criticism poorly I’d probably point out that there’s no way you’re an actual doctor because of all your grammatical errors. But I’m above that (see what I did there?).

          Ok, now that we have that cleared up we can move on. All I’m saying is Heat fans stay on their side of the metaphorical internet fence and we’ll stay on ours. Go Pacers.

          • doctor

            At what point did I say that im a doctor? It’s called an username, and FYI there’s some people like me who don’t speak english as their first language. But yeah I don’t feel like arguing since you try to take this on a personal level. Have fun with your pacers, see you guys in the playoffs

          • Jolson

            I’m a Miami fan but I like to read blogs from different teams. I’m a NBA fan. And btw- 8points9seconds is one of the best team-specific blogs out there.

    • Jeremy Cram

      Hey heat fan get off a Pacers page u geek!!! Nobody cares what u think, and no one wants to hear your lip…the sad thing is how worried u pathetic heat fans are about the Pacers! The only hope the heat have for getting back to the finals is a total melt down by this team! Guess what u got what u needed and whats truely funny is a team that is falling apart and cant eve nbeat the hawks at home still beat the HEAT! They have also given the 1 seed to the same HEAT who cant wve nwin there own games to pull away so take your snotty nosed 3rd grade comments back to the Heats team page, and get on your knees every night and pray that this group doesnt get theri collective heads out of their ass and get back t o playing team first ball!!!! Cause if they happen to the HEAT will have no chance to make another finals appreance and the days of the big 3 will be over!! So get off the PAcers team page dweeb and get a life i dont read any heat articles and dont care to wast my time with lame comments to talk trash over a keyboard!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!111

      • Truthspeak

        Shut up. Pacers are done. You guys are pathetic. You will lose to the Bobcats in the first round and your boy PG will keep sending dick pics to guys posing as girls. Everyone on the Pacers team is severely overrated. Hibbert is LOL, PG is the shittiest “superstar” in the league. G. Hill is also LOL. David West is a fake thug. Stephenson is a fucking goof.

      • Elijah

        So you just want a circlejerk among Indiana fans? Wow.

      • Jolson

        Even if Miami doesn’t make the Finals they’ll have made 3 finals in 4 years and won 2 rings. Have the Pacers ever even won a championship? Ever? In franchise history?

      • guest

        stop posting your shit to general nba forums if you don’t want us to criticize your weak ass team

    • Guest

      yeah, it’s more like they became the Knicks and PG thinks he’s Melo lol.

  • milwaukee fan

    “Then it happened.
    You became Miami.”

    Come on, I get that you guys have a rivalry but thats a little ridiculous. The Heat have great chemistry, something that has been a huge issue for the Pacers in their recent slump. Plus, would it really be that bad to be like the team that just won 2 rings off of 3 consecutive finals appearances?

  • Jeziel Garcia

    You mean you wish Indiana became Miami, right? Because, if they did become Miami, I could see them winning a championship in the near future. If their offense would even nearly get to that of the Heat’s level? They would be bona fide contenders year after year.

    “stagnate, isolation ball??” Really? Besides maybe the first season of the big three, you would be hard pressed to find someone describe Heat ball as stagnant, or isolation focused. On the contrary, Miami has had one of the top offenses for the past couple of years because they have a complete team of players ready to contribute at a moments notice off the bench, along with their all-star core, who have been having the most efficient seasons of their career due to staying in the flow of offense and always looking for the open man. If there’s one thing you can level at the Heat sometimes, it’s that Lebron is sometimes TOO unselfish, and that he SHOULD take charge of the ball in some necessary moments. Or that Bosh, being as skilled a forward as he is, should take MORE advantage of mobility coupled with his great jump shot.

    I honestly admire the hard nose attitude and defense that the Pacers usually show, and sometimes I wish Miami would show the same intensity on defense, but to draw the comparison that Indiana became Miami? That’s laughable.

  • Matt Gold

    “An underdog team without a superstar forced its heralded, big-market opponent to adapt to a rough, unrelenting style of play.”

    Please see: Detroit Pistons 2003-2008

    If Indiana can hold it together – there is a championship in their grasp.

  • panthertron

    It’s more like they became the Knicks and PG thinks he’s Melo lol.

  • guest

    the reason us miami fans are here is because some twat posted this on /r/nba. if you have a problem with that keep your blog posts off of a general nba forum.