Well, all good things must come to an end. After a blowout season opener win against the Washington Wizards and a closer win against the Cleveland Cavaliers last Saturday, the Indiana Pacers suffered their first loss of the season to the Chicago Bulls on Monday night.
This was a pretty frustrating game to watch from the start, as the Pacers got off to their usual slow start, and despite taking the lead going into the second quarter, they never really looked like they wanted the win.
After two almost perfect games, the Pacers watched a lot of their efforts go in vain as Nikola Vucevic and the Bulls came away with a close 112-105 win. If we’re being completely honest, however, Indiana played like they lost by way more, especially in the closing stretches where they couldn’t buy a bucket and looked lost.
There is one thing to address when talking about the loss, though. The Pacers may have taken the game to overtime had the referees not called a bad foul on Andrew Nembhard in the final minute of the game, effectively sealing the game for the Bulls and eliminating any real hope of a Pacers comeback.
However, one or two bad calls do not excuse an otherwise bad game and certainly cannot be used as a scapegoat to distract from the crucial errors from the players and the coaching staff that led to a loss against a potentially inferior team.
Watching the game, four things stood out in particular as to why Indiana lost, and all four are equally disheartening, especially the ones that have been discussed before.
In my previous takeaways, a lot of these subjects have been brought up, and it has been stated that while the Pacers were winning despite them, they could quickly come back to haunt them in a loss, exactly like the one tonight.
Let’s get into the four biggest reasons why the Pacers lost to the Bulls.