The Indiana Pacers managed to get the job done against the Philadelphia 76ers in front of their fans at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, but it’s safe to say the team struggled more than expected against a team carrying one of the longest losing streaks in NBA history.
The two cornerstones of the team, Paul George and Roy Hibbert, struggled mightily; but luckily for the Pacers, the rest of the main contributors stepped up right when they were needed the most. George Hill scored some clutch buckets, including a huge 3-pointer in the fourth that sparked an offensive run, and Lance Stephenson led all scorers with 25 points.
However, the reality is that the Pacers can’t repeat an outing like this against a tougher team.
Facing a tough schedule that includes games against teams that appear to be playoff-bound (with the exception of the New York Knicks) the Pacers simply can’t allow themselves to fail against lesser teams. They are in a heated battle with the Miami Heat for the top spot in the Eastern Conference, and losing games against weaker teams is unacceptable.
The team got the job done against the 76ers and won by a close 99-90 score that actually doesn’t do any justice to how the game was played. However, another performance like this, and the Pacers will likely end up on the losing end of the contest, a luxury they can’t afford if they have any hope of grabbing the top seed in the East.