Pacers hope to rise above hype

Indiana Pacers' Myles Turner (33) is congratulated by Ian Mahinmi (28) after Turner blocked a shot during the first half of Game 4 of an NBA first-round playoff basketball series against the Toronto Raptors, Saturday, April 23, 2016, in Indianapolis. (AP Photo/Darron Cummings)

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Same practice court. Same faces. Same attitude. But the circumstances are certainly not the same for the Pacers.

A team that almost missed the playoffs now has a chance to advance to the second round.

“We just got to come in and play our game and forget all the hype about who has the momentum and what not,” said Rodney Stuckey. “We know this is going to be tough for us, but I think we’re all up for the challenge.”

The blue and gold’s starting five — all scoring in double figures — definitely posed a challenge for Toronto’s defense in Game 6. Coach Frank Vogel feels that balanced scoring attack will be a necessity to pull out Game 7 on the road.

“It’s what we’ve been preaching for most of this series. While Paul’s been really hot, he can’t do it himself. And we shouldn’t ask him to, and we shouldn’t pretend that that’s going to get the job done,” said Vogel. “It’s got to be a balanced attack; it’s got to be a team win, a team effort. And seeing our guys have that type of balance they had last night is what we’re looking for.”

“You feel confident about going there. You feel good about going there. It won’t be easy, but we’ve played well there, we’ve showed signs of putting some complete quarters together,” said Paul George. “We’ve just got to put a full game together there.”

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