Pacers' Young: Raptors letting Cavs 'walk into the next round'
Thaddeus Young has found it "damn frustrating" to watch the Eastern Conference semifinals.
For one, his Indiana Pacers came a few stops (or perhaps one blown goaltending call) short of advancing to the second round. They pushed the best player in the game, LeBron James, to his breaking point and nearly pulled off the upset over the Cleveland Cavaliers. But they didn't, and now they're watching from home and shaking their heads over what they're witnessing.
The No. 1-seeded Toronto Raptors dropped the first two games of the East semis at home to the Cavaliers - the first coming by one point in overtime, and the second being a James-orchestrated beatdown. Following Toronto's 128-110 Game 2 loss, Young texted teammates Victor Oladipo, Darren Collison, and Cory Joseph.
"I said, 'Man, so they'e just going to let Cleveland walk into the Eastern Conference Finals? They're letting them walk into the next round.' I told them, 'Man, this is crazy. We're supposed to be out there right now,'" Young recalled to HoopsHype's Alex Kennedy.
"We all understand that we lost the series and there were self-inflicted mistakes on our part," Young continued. "But, at the end of the day, Toronto has to at least win a couple games. The first game could have gone either way, but the second game? You can't come back like that.
"We're sitting at home and watching these games like, 'Man, we would've at least been in the game. We would've at least gotten ourselves back into the game and made it a fight.' The series isn't over - it's a long series - and Toronto is definitely a good team."
Since then, the Raptors lost another game to Cleveland thanks to another historic performance from James, who pulled up for a game-winning bank shot at the buzzer to push Toronto to the brink of elimination.
It's clear the Pacers matched up better against LeBron and Co., or at least put up a better fight than the Raptors have thus far. Behind one of the best transition offenses in the NBA, Indiana actually outscored Cleveland by 40 points over their seven-game series, while the Pacers' four losses came by an average of just 3.5 points.