There's a common narrative in place for the Indiana Pacers that they are a good team that plays well together but don't have the star or stars to compete with the elite talent in the NBA. Danny Granger is their best player and while he's a solid NBA scorer, he's not a superstar. Gotta have a superstar to be taken seriously.

That story has changed drastically over the past couple of months but I still read analysis of the Pacers tinged with those stale thoughts from last May when the Pacers fell to the Miami Heat. I also see it surfacing in analysis of All-Star reserve options.

Look, there is no doubt the Pacers started the season without their best player (Granger) and had to adjust. But as we sit here in late January, the Pacers are no longer playing without their best player...or players.