Hilarious. For weeks, with their playoff hopes gone and the lottery in waiting, the Indiana Pacers played their best basketball of the season, winning 10 of 12 games. All it did was destroy almost any hope of securing a top 5 pick in the next NBA draft (which they were in line to get before the run). Now, when it TRULY doesn't matter whether the Pacers win or lose anymore (since it won't change their position in the standings regardless), they go and get blown out by the Orlando Magic in their home finale, 118-98.
As has happened so many times this season, the game was over by the end of the first quarter, when the Magic steamrolled ahead with a 42-18 lead. What made things more depressing was that after keeping playing time sporadic during the damaging hot streak, Coach Jim O'Brien finally decided to give more playing time to AJ Price, who played 25 minutes. However, the bulk of the bench minutes were given to Mike Dunleavy and Dahntay Jones. Josh McRoberts only played 12 minutes, and Luther Head and Solomon Jones didn't play at all. Puzzling and depressing.
The Pacers finish their regular season on the road against the Washington Wizards on Wednesday.