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Cleveland Cavaliers v Indiana Pacers

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It’s been a trying season for the Pacers.  While they find themselves in the thick of the Eastern Conference, their play has been inconsistent the majority of the season.  Looking really good against some of the league’s best and losing to some of its worst.  On paper, Monday’s 108-103 loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers looks like a game where the Pacers just lost to one of the top teams in the East.  But considering the Cavs were without three of their regular starters, including Donovan Mitchell, and saw another rocky outing by Tyrese Haliburton, this was another bad loss in a season filled with them.

Haliburton had just 14 points on 4-of-14 shooting and was 1-for-9 from 3-point range.

I never went through a slump like this in my life … this (expletive) sucks. Everybody’s got the (expletive) answer, but it’s about me figuring (expletive) out. – Tyrese Haliburton after his performance in the loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers

Tyrese Haliburton is as fed up with his play as anyone.  The post-game press conference was the most fiery we’ve seen the Pacers star this season as his slump has been pretty consistent since the All-Star break.  Rick Carlisle made a point to show it isn’t all on Haliburton but the team as a whole.  He also said on his weekly radio show with us, that he’s sick of the narrative that’s been spewed after losses.

I’m tired of talking about how we’ve gotta learn from this. That’s getting to be a tired narrative from anyone on our team or on our coaching staff. We’ve been through a lot this year. It’s time for us to have learned these lessons about being able to maintain intensity, focus, attention to detail, the importance of defense, all that kind of stuff. That’s where it is. – Rick Carlisle on The Wake Up Call discussing another tough loss

The Pacers have 13 games remaining in the regular season and are currently sitting in the seventh-seed in the playoffs.  The Sixers and Heat are right in the vicinity of the Pacers, meaning a win or loss could move them up to the sixth seed or down to the eighth seed on any given night.  The wins need to start coming more regularly, but with the way the season has played out every game seems to be a fight to the finish.

For our full conversation with Rick Carlisle, click the link below!

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