Looking over last night’s win for the Indiana Pacers, I would like to call it the biggest win based upon on how the team has played, but still don’t believe it’s at that point. I think you could toss in the comeback victory against Detroit where the team was down 25 at one point and just turned the game completely around for themselves as the biggest victory of the year. I would even throw in the victory against Miami at home some games ago, where it looked like the pressure of that game would get to the team.
Last night’s win is a victory for the bench as they were the ones that got the job done. By now, we’ve heard all about this strategy to rest guys for the final games of the season. Therefore, last night, the starting five that’s been together for just about all of this season got the night off. That meant guys like Donald Sloan, Luis Scola, Chris Copeland, Rasual Butler, and you get the picture, would get a chance to go out and pick up a much needed win.
That’s what makes last night victory so sweet, we saw what those guys could do when things are all working. I think someone who really feels like he’ll get his just due is Chris Copeland. A guy that couldn’t find any minutes this season, but ends up driving to the basket and hitting a layup for the win. You saw the small celebration after that game, and if that doesn’t mean this team is mentally ready to go, I don’t know what else there is to do.
That to me is a big part of the collapse, mentally this team was worn down. You go from being more of an underdog to being the favorite, that has to take some edge off of your game. You have to enter a new mindset for that portion of the season.
Guys like Paul George and Roy Hibbert were needing just a night off to let things sink in that, it’s almost time to roll for what’s important, a lengthy playoff run. I think now that whole rest thing gets put to the side as the team needs to pick up a win tomorrow in Miami to have a legit shot at the top spot.
Who would have thought that going to bed last night, you would see the Blue and Gold sitting atop of the Eastern Conference after a loss by Miami? Why would the Indiana Pacers even entertain the thought of resting guys when you’re primed for a huge game tomorrow night and another game at Western Conference favorite, the Oklahoma City Thunder at home on Sunday. I believe you have to bring your best effort in those two games, and then you can rest up the final game of the season.
Truly tomorrow night will prove what last night’s win means, if anything. More so, I believe it will prove the worth of giving the starting five the night off. A win would solidify that idea, and a loss would possibly leave more questions as to what’s still plaguing the team.
Tags: Indiana Pacers