The Pacers still hasn't figured out their starting lineup

Since shipping Buddy Hield to Philly and acquiring Pascal Siakam, the Indiana Pacers still haven't figured out their most effective starting lineup.

Mar 3, 2024; San Antonio, Texas, USA;  Indiana Pacers forward Pascal Siakam (43) shoots in front of
Mar 3, 2024; San Antonio, Texas, USA; Indiana Pacers forward Pascal Siakam (43) shoots in front of / Daniel Dunn-USA TODAY Sports
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Usually, if you have the best offense in the NBA, you don't mess much with the lineup. The problem for the Indiana Pacers was that their defense was so bad that their offense was getting canceled out. They were a bottom-three defense in the league so their net rating wasn't very strong.

Kevin Pritchard and the Pacers' front office decided to make some moves to help improve both the offense and the defense. Trading Bruce Brown and Jordan Nwora for Pascal Siakam was the big one. Acquiring a forward to is switchable on the perimeter seemed like a slam dunk.

Then the Pacers decided to get rid of Buddy Hield. I don't mind the concept of doing that if you can get something valuable in return. I'm not sure getting an older Doug McDermott qualifies. But since the starting lineup has changed, the Pacers still haven't found the best combination.

The Pacers still haven't found the best starting lineup combination

Looking at the lineup the Pacers have used the most since the Siakam and Hield trades, that's Haliburton, Nembhard, Nesmith, Siakam, and Turner, it hasn't been great. That lineup has a -9 net rating. It's not even close to their most effective offensive lineup.

They need to figure out a permanent answer at the two-guard spot. Andrew Nembhard has started to shoot the three a bit better and that's what the coaching staff is hoping for because his stoutness on defense is needed. Mathurin, while getting better defensively, still isn't reliable on that side of the ball.

Nothing matters until Haliburton fixes his shot. If he isn't hitting outside shots, the Pacers are in trouble because they don't have anyone who can create their own shot besides Siakam in the starting lineup. Haliburton opens everything else up on the floor.

Next. Next story. Haliburton's struggles a concern for the Pacers. dark

The Pacers have now fallen to 8th in the standings. While they still have a cushion between them and the 9th-seeded Bulls, they would like to get back up to 6th to avoid the play-in. They have to figure out the proper starting lineup before things get away from them this season.