The Indiana Pacers are coming off of a 107-100 victory over the Orlando Magic at the Amway Center in Orlando, Florida. The outcome of the game improved the Pacers’ overall record to 10-8 and their road record to 6-5. Not only have they now won four consecutive games in general, but they have won four straight road games as well.
Indiana has found great success as a road team. In fact, when they have played on the road this season, their offense has produced at an excellent rate, and their defense has been above average. To quantify that, as the away team this season, the Pacers have a 108.6 offensive rating (5th), a 105.5 defensive rating (11th), and a 3.0 net rating (7th).
Their favorable execution away from Bankers Life Fieldhouse is a real reason for optimism because the team badly struggled on the road last season. In fact, they finished the 2016-17 season with a 13-28 road record and were tied for the 20th ranked away record. For a team that went 29-12 and were tied for the 7th best home winning percentage, it’s safe to say that they were held back by their lack of success on as the away team.
It’s important to understand the difference in the production that this year’s Pacers team has produced on the road compared to the 2016-17 squad. Last season, when playing away from Indiana, the Pacers produced just a 104.2 offensive rating (15th), a 109.6 defensive rating (21st), and a -5.4 net rating (21st). It’s also worth noting that their current four-game road winning streak is longer than any streak that they had last season.
For the sake of comparison, Indiana has produced better by 4.4 in offensive rating, by 4.1 in defensive rating, and by 8.4 in net rating. Also, Their execution on the road this season has genuinely translated to legitimate success on the court. As previously mentioned, they have already won 6 road games. Last season, it wasn’t until their 41st overall game that they reached 6 road wins, which was on January 18, 2017.
For a team that was supposed to be terrible, it’s impressive that they started the year with a 10-8 record compared to a 9-9 record through 18 games just a year ago. Also, they have won at least three consecutive games twice so far this season. Last year’s team didn’t have their first three-game winning streak until their 34th game, and it took them until their 47th game to have their second three-game winning streak.