Indiana Pacers can’t handle the Houston Rockets’ long-range barrage


The Indiana Pacers couldn’t stop the Houston Rockets’ barrage of 3-pointers on Sunday night, dropping their record to 8-6.

It turns out, 3 is more than 2. The Indiana Pacers learned this the hard way as the Houston Rockets rained down 20 of them (on 47 attempts) in their win over the blue and gold.

Indiana’s offense was the same as it usually was, for better or worse, but the Melo-less Rockets were lighting it up from deep. On one hand, you could say that Houston simply had a hot shooting night. On the other hand, the Pacers struggle to cover shooters beyond the arc, so this might simply be the product of that weakness being exposed.

With a few days off before their next game, there is plenty of time for the Pacers to stew over what went wrong (3>2), but there is a question right now whether there really is something wrong with Indiana or if they can start picking up wins by virtue of still 8th ranked net rating.

Sooner or later, time will tell.

169. 103. 100. Final. 115

The Indiana Pacers 3-point defense is a real issue

While few teams can exploit it like the Rockets or Milwaukee Bucks, Indiana is ranked 30th in 27 27th in allowed 3-pointers, and 25th in both their opponents’ attempts and percentage.

Indiana still has a top 10 defense, but if opponents continue to create open shots from range against them, there are more nights ahead like this where Indiana chases from behind the whole time. It’s tough when your opponent averages nearly an 11 point lead throughout the game.

Bojan Bogdanovic more consistent this season

Despite the claim that Bojan Bogdanovic is remarkedly inconsistent is a lie, the idea is still out there. His 20 points on Sunday were a small reminder he is the team’s secondary scoring option and on nights where Victor Oladipo struggles, he can keep them in the fight.

It’s easy to get stuck on all the 3-pointers the Pacers hemorrhaged, but perhaps on another night where Houston made a few less, we might have been talking more about Bojan’s 20 points, his third 20+ night this season.

The schedule should get more favorable to Indiana

Despite a few easy wins, the Pacers’ schedule to start the season isn’t a cakewalk.

That doesn’t excuse their mistakes. That doesn’t excuse the lack of explosive offensive options outside of Victor Oladipo (despite Bojan’s best efforts).

Again, their net rating is still top 10 in the league. That means if they keep this up, some of these games where historically great shooting buries them will be flipped around. Instead of finding themselves on the wrong end of the scoreboard, the Pacers should pick up more and more wins.

But that’s not a gurantee. They still have to go out there and win games.

B. The point guard’s up-and-down season continued with an upward swing to the tune of 13 points on 5 of 10 shooting on Sunday. His 3 of 5 performance from deep helped keep Indiana from getting demolished by the Rockets, though it still felt like more than a 12-point loss.. PG. Indiana Pacers. DARREN COLLISON

C-. While he was on the hunt for a triple-double (22 points, 10 rebounds, 7 assists), 29.2 percent shooting doesn’t cut it. Oladipo was 7 of 24 on the night and 3 of 10 from deep. Oladipo is the engine behind the teams success, but he sputtered against the Rockets.. SG. Indiana Pacers. VICTOR OLADIPO

SF. Indiana Pacers. BOJAN BOGDANOVIC. A. 20 points (6 of11, 3 of 5 from deep), 6 rebounds, 6 assists, and 3 steals were only countered by a trio of turnovers.

THADDEUS YOUNG. B. 13 points on 6 of 9 shooting, though weirdly only rebound, assist, and steal. You just assume he grabs a few more of those.. PF. Indiana Pacers

B-. Stats were meh: 9 points, 3 blocks, 3 rebounds, and an assist, but one of the few starters who made consistent appearances on defense.. C. Indiana Pacers. MYLES TURNER

B. <strong> Good: </strong>11 points and 6 rebounds <strong>Bad: </strong>4 turnovers and foul trouble early on. C. Indiana Pacers. DOMANTAS SABONIS

D. 6 points, 2 rebounds and an uninspired 2 of 7 shooting. He is an improvement over last year’s bench options, but he hasn’t lived up to the hype as of yet.. SG. Indiana Pacers. TYREKE EVANS

B. 5 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists, and a steals in a solid defensive performance off the bench.. PG. Indiana Pacers. CORY JOSEPH

?. 4 points, but please pass Doug McDermott the ball.. SF. Indiana Pacers. DOUG MCDERMOTT

C-. In four minutes of play, he only had an assist.. C. Indiana Pacers. KYLE O'QUINN

-. . PF. Indiana Pacers. TJ LEAF

Someone please pass Doug McDermott the ball. dark. Next

The Pacers next game is on Friday when they face the Miami Heat once again.