Grades: Pacers succumb to Wizardry, lose to Washington

The Indiana Pacers played horribly and lost to the Washington Wizards.

The Indiana Pacers stunk in their game against the Wizards. There is no other way to shake it. They were bad.

Indiana Pacers
Washington Wizards

That 89 number is the lowest point total the team has had this entire season. It’s lower than the 91 they hung on the Cavs when they were demoralized at home. The game was really rough.

It’s really hard to score without your two best shot creators. With Victor Oladipo and Tyreke Evans out in this one, the Pacers had a really tough time creating a semblance of an offense. When the shot clock was winding down, they had too few options.

On the flip side, Nate McMillan had no answers. He was forced into some tough decisions without any creators, but the solutions he came up with were not great. He tried to get early shot clock looks for the likes of Doug McDermott (who attempts the second most shots on the team) and Bojan Bogdanovic, neither of which who succeeded. Early looks can be an open shot, but they are rarely the best shot. It looked gross.

On the bright side, TJ Leaf did some good stuff:

Let’s start with that to do a positive.


Get used to TJ Leaf contributing

I did not think TJ Leaf had a future in the NBA before this season started. This month he’s had has changed my tune. Not that he has been like SO good or anything, he has just not been bad. He is finding ways here and there to be effective, and tonight was his best career game. I think it’s going to stick.

I need to see something more

Perhaps I should blame myself here, but I had higher expectations for the sans-Oladipo Pacers. The offense looks kinda gross. When their set breaks down, they are out of options and didn’t have the creative to mitigate that problem tonight.

It’s hard to manufacture points without Reke and Vic. But a season-low in points? Come on. Everyone from the coaching staff down has to do better.

Calm down, young kids

I love getting playing time for Edmond Sumner (though I do not think he should be starting) and Aaron Holiday. They need development time, they have promising futures.

They combined for 15 shots. 15. Fifteen! That’s a ton. They made 4. They haven’t earned that many attempts yet. I think fewer would go a long way for both.

Now, player and coaching grades:


PG, Indiana Pacers

D -

1/7 shooting, 2 assists, and 2 turnovers. Didn’t do anything to slow down Satoransky. Not a great performance.
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SG, Indiana Pacers

C -

Brad Beal gave the kid a lesson. Sumner showed off that he has some real skills, but he hasn’t finished plays (2/7) and fouled 3 times VERY early on, which put the Wiz in the bonus really fast. He’ll get better, but he needs a reduced role.