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Indiana Pacers (128) Vs. Boston Celtics (133) At TD Garden

Source: Boston Globe / Getty

It was right there for the taking. 

Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals between the heavily favored Boston Celtics and the underdog Indiana Pacers had all but been won by Indiana. All they had to do was protect the basketball, play smart, and they’d be up 1-0 in the series. Instead, they suffered a meltdown of epic proportions, allowing the Celtics to tie it up in the closing seconds on a Jaylen Brown 3-pointer to force overtime, and then take the game outright in the extra period.  

It was as frustrating an end to a game as one could imagine, especially a game in which the Pacers had gone toe-to-toe with what many consider the most talented team in the league. The Pacers did more than prove that they can hang with Boston, they proved that they can beat them.  

And yet, they didn’t. Instead, they let a fantastic opportunity to steal a win, and maybe change the outlook of the series, slip through their fingers. 

As much of a gut-punch as it was for Indiana, they have no time to linger. Instead, they must find a way to process the loss, learn from it, and then put it to rest before Game 2 tips off Thursday night. The Celtics are far too good of a team for the Pacers to be distracted or despondent when playing them.  

All season, the Pacers have responded well when punched in the teeth. They’ll need to summon that energy and resilience once again if they want to tie this series up.  

During Wednesday’s edition of The Ride With JMV, John spoke to Eddie Gill of the Pacers Radio Network as well as Jeremiah Johnson of Bally Sports Indiana about the game. Listen to their conversations down below and tune into The Ride With JMV weekdays from 3-6pm on 93.5/107.5 The Fan!  

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