The GIF that sums up the Pacers’ Game 5 performance


Indiana’s George Hibbert, center, and Lance Stephenson watch the final minute from the bench as their team loses, 107-97, to the Hawks in Game 5 of their playoff series. (Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
 

The Pacers’ remarkable implosion continued Monday night, as the Eastern Conference’s No. 1 seed lost to the Hawks and fell behind in their first-round playoff series, 3-2, in front of a disgruntled home crowd. It wasn’t even so much that Indiana lost but how: After a competitive first quarter, the Pacers allowed Atlanta to go berserk in the second, giving up 13-of-16 shooting from the field and getting outscored 41-19. It was only the second time in the shot-clock era that a road team scored at least 40 points and allowed less than 20 in any quarter of a playoff game (the 1970 Bucks were the first to do it.)

The Hawks led 61-40 at halftime, ballooned their lead to 30 points in the third quarter and were never really threatened the rest of the way, although Indiana did manage a late, futile rally. Meanwhile, this happened:

That’s just how things have been going for the Pacers of late. During that second quarter, the crowd at Bankers Life Fieldhouse fell into such a stunned silence that a single heckler could be clearly heard on the telecast.

(Courtesy of Mike Prada)

The game also featured a disappearing act by 7-foot-2 Pacers center Roy Hibbert that, even set against his recent struggles, almost defies belief. This tweet is very mean and completely fair at the same time:

This former editor and part-time writer at The Post is now happy to prove that if you combine 'blowhard' and 'blaggard,' you get 'blogger.' He previously had used 'Desmond Bieler' as his byline, but feels that shortening the first name to 'Des' nicely conveys his ever-decreasing gravitas.
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Des Bieler | April 28