After six eventful games, the No. 1 seed Indiana Pacers were tossed from the playoffs by the Miami Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals, sending this young, talented group home packing wondering what went wrong.
Well, some would argue that part of the reason this Pacers team couldn’t pull it all together was because of the immature antics of Lance Stephenson, who put on full display this series just how far that immaturity goes.
The pinnacle of this was in Game 5, a game which the Pacers won, where Stephenson was caught blowing into LeBron James’ ear.
But now, here’s the thing with Stephenson. He will become a free agent shortly. Which actually makes his antics that much more befuddling, seeing as now some teams that could have potentially wanted his services may turn the other way.
And then, of course, there’s always the possibility that he could return to the Pacers instead of heading elsewhere, but then the question becomes: Would his teammates want him back?
Well shortly following the Game 6 blowout on Friday night, the most critical member of the Pacers and one of the fastest rising stars in the NBA, Paul George was asked whether or not he would want to play with Stephenson again; and let’s just say that the response wasn’t exactly a ringing endorsement.
Paul George, asked if he wants Lance on his side next year: “I mean, I don’t know.”
— Israel Gutierrez (@IzzyESPN) May 31, 2014
Nope. Not a ringing endorsement by any means.
Still, considering the way that Stephenson has acted not just in these playoffs, but throughout the entire season, you can’t blame anyone on the Pacers –nor anyone on any other team for that matter– to be skeptical about playing with someone like that.