The 2021-22 Pacers have pulled off an incredible feat after the trade deadline, becoming a really fun team to watch lose.
The team has lost seven consecutive games with one to go before the NBA All-Star break, but the last three games with new faces Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield and Jalen Smith showing all kinds of fun offensive output, have made the late, or as in Milwaukee early, fades for losses an entertaining watch. Sadly, rookies Chris Duarte and Isaiah Jackson haven’t been available which is probably a blessing in disguise if you zoom out to the big picture.
The Pacers have now lost 40 games before they won 20. This is early ‘80s stuff my friends, so if you haven’t, it may be time to lean into it. Of course, as I’m typing this, the Wizards come into town with an equally gnarly mess on their hands and give the new Pacers a chance to win their first game for the home fans and snap that losing streak before the break. Honestly, they deserve it.
As you will see in the links, we learned today that Chris Duarte will remain out thru the break and not participate in the Rising Stars even at the ASG which he earned when healthy throughout the start of the season. Tyrese Haliburton will rep the Pacers as a Soph on the Isiah Team, so not all is lost.
Speaking of Tyrese Haliburton, and if you’re not you should be, the future leader of the franchise is everything you can hope for in the “face” for your team going forward. He spoke of “loving hard” when he arrived, explaining his shock at being dealt before the deadline last week. Well, he expounded on those thoughts and took everyone inside the process of well, processing the news and reality of being traded to the Pacers.
This dude is something. Check it out.
Personally, I’ve witnessed the start and rise to stardom of Danny Granger, Paul George and Victor Oladipo. There was a common arc among those three that didn’t help the team as they were influenced by non-basketball people more interested in individual branding (to Granger’s credit, that was a blip on his career, but there was a moment). I say this to say, Haliburton could not come off more genuine and as the type of player, check that, person you want leading your organization.
Sincerely, hope it holds up this time.
Check out the links: