It doesn’t exactly take a PhD. in analytic chemistry to see the that Pacers are having chemistry issues on the court.
As fans we like simple, clean answers to things — it’s Lance Stephenson’s fault, it was trading Danny Granger, it’s all on Frank Vogel, it’s Andrew Bynum, etc. — when the reality is it is a little bit of a lot of things. Life is a complex dish. Those little things have formed a perfect storm of an issue.
One Paul George is tired of talking about. He wants you to know that he and his fellow Pacers are still tight. So first he took to Instagram Tuesday night.
Caption: These rumors have got to stop! Its gettin old now and all you that believe them are ignorant! #Brothers
I get what Paul George is going for here, but “gone fishing” has a different connotation in the playoffs. Not sure that is what he was going for here.
George echoed some of those same things at shootaround before Game 2 against the Wizards on Wednesday night, as reported by Brian Windhorst at ESPN.
“I’m just getting tired of the media and these stories,” he said. “I’m just putting everything to bed and to rest.”
George Hill chimed in, too.
“You guys keep making up stories,” Hill said. “We’re just trying to focus and letting Roy know through all this BS that is going on, the rumors and everything like that, that we’re all brothers. This locker room is a tight group and we’re going to continue to be there for each other even when people are trying to break it apart.”
The Pacers are going with the “us against the world” motivation — which is fine if it works. At this point they should do anything that works.
I don’t think the question should be “do they like each other?” I imagine many of them do still get along and will hang out fishing this summer.
The real question is “can they get back to playing together as a unit?”
Watching the way they do not trust each other on the court, the way they don’t move off the ball, the way they are afraid to give up the rock for fear of never getting it back, I’m not sure they can, I’m not sure anything will work. At least not well enough, fast enough to salvage this season.
Or very possibly even this series against the Wizards.