Indiana Pacers: The good, bad and ugly from the 2020-21 season

Indiana Pacers - Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports
Indiana Pacers - Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports /
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The inevitable finally happened. While it took longer than it should’ve been, the Indiana Pacers now head straight to the summer after being eliminated by the Wizards in a disappointing 142-115 loss.

After sneaking themselves into the playoff discussion by drubbing the Hornets earlier, in typical 2020-21 Pacers fashion, the Blue and Gold brought poetic justice through a similar rout, but found themselves on the wrong side of the coin.

For the first time in six seasons, the Pacers face an early offseason. There may be some silver linings, such as the lottery finish, pleasant player surprises, and avoiding the conventional first-round exit, but all of those couldn’t possibly defeat the elephant in the room: that this season was a flat-out, straight-up disappointment.

Indiana managed to turn those lofty yet rational preseason expectations into “what were you thinking” pipe dreams. The proverbial injury bug continued its rampage in the Circle City, yet for every context that starts morphing into an excuse and for every mistake under the clever disguise of a risk, the Pacers are now left dangling in the middle.

As Pacers fans look in hindsight about what went wrong this year and with the season now f̶i̶n̶a̶l̶l̶y̶ over, we commence this ceremonial season review series by zooming in on the good, bad and ugly from the 2020-21 campaign.