Thursday night at Conseco Fieldhouse, the Indiana Pacers routed the Los Angeles Clippers 107-80. The win brought the team’s record to 5-5 after dropping to 4-5 in a 10-point loss to Atlanta that Tuesday.
Thus has been the Pacers so far this season.
They either play really well (their 144-113 whopping of Denver) or they play really, well, not so well (their 26-point loss to Philadelphia who they had beat by 13 points four days prior).
It’s not just the fact that they’re swapping wins for losses — their record’s good enough for sixth place in the East — it’s that they haven’t found consistency in doing so.
In their five total wins, they’ve outscored their opponents by a combined 88 points. 88 points! That means they’re winning by an average of 17.6 points per game. Those are really impressive figures, considering 10-1 New Orleans is winning by an average of only 8.4 points per game. Not to mention, all but one of the Pacers’ wins have come by at least 13 points.
That’s the winning. But what about the losing?
In their five losses, they’ve been outscored by a combined 56 points. That means their average loss comes by 11.2 points a game.
So they’re winning big and losing big.
If you think about it, it’s kind of like when your dad would do really well on his sports picks one week, only to lose everything he made the next week.
He’s not mad, though. He figures, “We’ll it’s not like I lost anything. I only gambled what I profited. Technically that makes me even.” Obviously your father is a glass half full man.
But what about those half empty kind of dads? They’re the ones saying, “I can’t believe I lost all that money! I was up, way up, how did I lose it all?”
Fortunately for the Pacers, they control their own fate. They can be half empty thinkers. And it will be that kind of mentality that keeps the wins coming. They’ve proven they can do it. Unfortunately, it’s only going to get harder from here.
So far, the team has only played three teams with winning records. In fact, only one of their five wins is against a team with a winning record.
That all changes tonight when they take on the Magic (8-3) at 7 p.m. Then they play in Miami (8-4) on Monday. Last season they went 1-7 against the two teams.
If they play half-full basketball, they aren’t going to win. It’s that simple. But, if they come out looking to fill their glass, there is no reason why they can’t challenge Miami and Orlando.
In my estimation, if you can beat Denver by 31 and lose to Philly by 26, you can beat anyone and lose to anyone.
Which Pacers team comes to play against the Magic and Heat is yet to be determined. But if they can play the way they are capable of, night in and night out, their record could start to climb above .500, so long as the team finds no satisfaction with a glass half full.