Indiana Pacers ‘shocking the world’ as they advance to the NBA In-Season Tournament championship

The Indiana Pacers have been the surprise team of the NBA In-Season Tournament.

Indiana defeated Giannis Antetokounmpo and the Milwaukee Bucks 128-119 to clinch a spot in the In-Season Tournament Final where they will play the winner of the Los Angeles Lakers and New Orleans Pelicans game. The Pacers were 4.5-point underdogs going into Tuesday’s semifinal matchup. 

Despite the upset win, Indiana doesn’t see themselves as the Cinderella team. The Pacers believe that this is just the beginning of what could come down the road. 

“We’re a disruptor,” said Pacers coach Rick Carslie. 

“A lot of people didn’t want us here. We don’t care about that. We earned our way here. People are gonna find out about the Pacers and who we are and how we play. We’re just looking to get better.we have we have a goal. We have a dream as an organization to be an NBA championship organization.”

The Pacers defeated the Cavaliers, 76ers, Hawks, Pistons and Celtics before downing the Bucks on Tuesday. Point guard Tyrese Haliburton has been the team’s star this season, averaging 26.9 points and a league-leading 11.9 assists per game. 

“People are talking about (Haliburton) for MVP and rightly so,” Carlisle said.

Related: Indiana Pacers standing in Sportsnaut’s NBA power rankings

Tyrese Haliburton and Indiana Pacers shocking the world

indiana pacers' tyrese haliburton

It was Haliburton who hit the dagger 3-pointer late in the fourth quarter to seal the win for the Pacers. He ended Thursday’s game with 27 points, 15 assists and 7 rebounds. With the All-Star game in Indiana this year, he’s almost a shoe-in to make his second all-star appearance of his career.

“It’s our time as a group and we’re playing the right way,” Haliburton said

“We’re shocking the world right now. We’re going to continue to do that. And as long as we play the right way, we know we’re going to be in every basketball game and we have a lot of confidence within ourselves. It doesn’t matter who believes in us as long as the guys in the locker room do, we have all the trust in the world.”

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