The Indiana Pacers will look to continue their winning ways tonight against Dwyane Wade, LeBron James, Chris Bosh and the Miami HEAT. One key to the start of Frank Vogel's head coaching career is his ability to create a "blue-collar" approach to the game with this Pacers team. Tyler Hansbrough and Josh McRoberts have turned a perceived weakness into a strength with their versatile yet hard working capabilities. The Pacers should have every opportunity to continue this trend of owning the paint both on the offensive and defensive ends of the floor. However, the HEAT will be seeking revenge as they try to avenge one of their bigger losses earlier in the season.
A few months back the Pacers were riding high while beating the lesser quality opponents and at the very least making games out of the top tier teams, if not winning them. One of the key wins early in the season was against the Miami HEAT. That HEAT team, however, is not the same as the one the Pacers will face tonight in Miami. As the Lakers and Nuggets showed already, teams will look for some payback as they see earlier Pacers losses as bad losses for their respective teams.
This is Frank Vogel's first true test tonight against one of the better teams in the league. I am not worrying about a win or loss at this point. I look forward to seeing continued consistency in rotation and overall play. A win would be a HUGE plus, but I believe continuing to build confidence and continuing to establish who this new Pacers team is comes first. After the jump, check out the links of the day, including Mike Wells digging into the Pacers new blue-collar approach and the Miami Herald's viewpoint on the game tonight...
PACERS: Countdown to Tipoff: Pacers vs. Heat
Countdown to Tipoff has the complete scouting report, including key stats, trends and matchups, as the Pacers put their four-game winning streak on the line Tuesday in Miami.
Pacers adopt power forwards' blue-collar style, and it's a hit | The Indianapolis Star | indystar.com
MIAMI -- The only things missing when the Indiana Pacers take the court are their hard hats, jeans and lunch pails.
Miami Heat is on pace to settle a score - Miami Heat - MiamiHerald.com
Miami HEAT looking for a little payback tonight...check out this article from the Miami Herald
Miami Heat eager for rematch with Pacers - Sun Sentinel
As a former video coordinator, Heat coach Erik Spoelstra has seen his share of poor basketball on film. What he saw during Monday's film session probably ranked among the worst performances. When
Pacers-Heat Preview - Feb. 7, 2011 - NBA - CBSSports.com
The Miami Heat suffered their worst home loss of the season against Indiana in November.
NBA Basketball Power Rankings - National Basketball Association - ESPN
Here come the Pacers moving up four spots in the ESPN Power Rankings
Hollinger's 2010-11 NBA Playoff Odds - National Basketball Association - ESPN
60% playoff odds right now...and apparently best case scenario, the Pacers finish 49-33..wouldn't that be nice!
NBA Power Rankings
Moving in the right direction in the Hoopsworld power rankings