NBA Indiana Pacers

5 Reasons Why the Indiana Pacers Aren’t For Real in 2014

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5 Reasons The Indiana Pacers Aren't For Real

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

The Indiana Pacers are a good team and have been playing well all season, that's a fact. They have time to improve and get themselves ready for a playoff run, but nobody in their right mind should be picking them to win the NBA Championship this season. They aren’t built to win it all this year, and unless they make some drastic changes and improve their team, they will get bounced from the playoffs yet again. Simply stated, the Indiana Pacers aren’t for real in 2014!

The Pacers have talent; they certainly have some good players on the roster. Frank Vogel, the head coach, is a great coach and has done extraordinary with the tools he has been given in Indiana. The Pacers organization is a proud bunch and the city loves their basketball team. They just don’t quite have enough to be the team come playoff time.

It’s no secret that the Miami Heat is the powerhouse team that stands in the way of the Pacers and their goal of winning the NBA Championship. But the obstacle that is the Miami Heat is not the only reason this team’s not for real in 2014. There are other obstacles which will trip up, hinder, and straight up derail this team’s dream of being the top dog in the NBA. Some of these factors are completely outside of Indiana’s control and like they say, sometimes life just isn’t fair. But the Pacers could have and should have made roster moves this past offseason to give themselves the best chance to make the playoffs and contend for the title. They should have done more to enhance their chances to compete.

Without further ado, the five biggest reasons the Indiana Pacers aren’t for real in 2014 and come playoff time, will be bounced from the playoffs again without winning it all. Take a look!

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5. Danny Granger’s Injury Woes

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Lately, Danny Granger is injury prone, that much is blatantly obvious. He missed the majority of last season and has gotten off to a turtle-like start to this year with another injury. He was held out most of the preseason so he’d be ready to play this year, however, that didn’t work out and he’s still not back to 100 percent. He is not the dominant player he is capable of being and the Pacers need him back to All-Star level now. They have played well without him, no doubt, but to win down the stretch and be effective in the playoffs, you have to have all your stars playing like stars. His injuries and slow return from them will linger all season and contribute to the fact that the Pacers aren’t for real this year.

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4. Lack Of Roster Depth

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The Pacers are not a very deep team. Their roster falls off productivity-wise pretty much immediately after the starters. Yes, Lance Stephenson is a good role player and most people have at least heard of Luis Scola, but the good teams have guys on their bench who could start on other teams. They chose to go to a team like Miami and come off the bench because they know they will compete for a championship every year. But after the starting five, Stephenson is really your only other threat to take over a game. C.J. Watson is nothing special, so don’t even mention him. This Pacers team is top heavy and productivity not only slows after the top six players on their team, it ends! If they’re able to win in the regular season without a bench consisting of at least a few serviceable players on it, good for them. However, as a whole, the team is not for real in 2014.

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3. Lack Of Competition In The Central

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Take a quick look at who Indiana is matched up with in the Central. Yes, there’s nothing there. Seeing as how Derek Rose got hurt again this year, the division is already won by the Pacers. His injury also adds a handful of cheap wins to bolster that already impressive record they currently hold. The problem is that their record is inflated; it’s not an accurate representation of their play. When you play the Cleveland Cavaliers, Milwaukee Bucks, Detroit Pistons and the Derrick Rose-less Chicago Bulls, you’re going to rack up a lot of wins. But you can’t lie to yourself and think that because they currently have the most wins in the NBA that they are actually the best team.

Indiana will end the season with a great record on paper; they may even win 70 games. But they won’t play in too many meaningful games, which will prepare them for playoff basketball. When you get used to winning all the time, you forget how to play through adversity and this will bite them when they go down 0-1 to the Heat in the playoffs. You play how you practice and when you play against poor competition for an entire season, it will show in the playoffs. Again, this isn’t their fault, but it’s still going to contribute to why they aren’t for real this year.

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2. Paul George Can’t Do It All

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Paul George is the savior for this team. He will try,but he can’t do it all. He may be the most valuable player to his particular team in any other situation other than basketball right now. Without him, the Pacers are barely .500 and quite possibly in last place in the East. He is the heart and soul of his team, but unfortunately for him, you need help in the NBA. Maybe he will be okay in the regular season, but come playoff time, you need other guys to step up.

This Pacers team doesn’t have a “Big 3” like so many other championship caliber teams have. You could argue they only have a “Big 1,” and that’s just not enough; it won’t cut it and they won’t win an NBA Championship with just George. What will they do when LeBron James takes him out of the game in the playoffs and the load falls on the rest of the team to score points and win the game? They get swept and bounced from the playoffs faster than Lance Stephenson and go get another tattoo. Seriously, he must have his own personal tattoo artist available to him whenever he thinks up some new ink. Anyways, even though George is one heck of a player, the NBA is still mostly a team sport and he needs help before this team can be for real.

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1. Can’t Beat The Heat

James Gang
Joe Camporeale-USA TODAY Sports

Come 2014 playoff time, it’s going to be déjà vu in Pacer country. For another season, the Pacers will not find a way to beat the Heat and make it to the NBA Championship. For all the reasons already mentioned, the Pacers will yet again be knocked out by King James and his posse. It’s a shame that the Pacers are in the East and in the shadow of the Heat’s dominant reign. It’s a shame that this group of guys is playing during the King James era. They are a good team and could at least have a chance if they could only get to the big dance, but James and his henchmen have been in their way the last few seasons and will be again this year.

Even with home court “advantage,” the Pacers can’t beat the Heat and win the East. James owns the Pacers and owns the East. Until he leaves the East or retires, the Pacers will be road blocked each and every year. Sure, they have proven they can beat them a few times, but the Pacers, or any team lately, haven't been able to beat the Heat in a seven game series. They are too good and too loaded with talent for that to happen. So, even if the Pacers improve all four of the other points in this article, it will all be for nothing. The Heat still stand in the way of their title aspirations.

Quite frankly, the Pacers aren’t for real in 2014 because the Miami Heat won’t let them be!