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IC Cold Links: Injured Pacers Begin Returning To The Lineup

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Here come the walking wounded. Or, hopefully, here come the reinforcements.

The injured Indiana Pacers are finally returning to the lineup, allowing the Pacers to play with a near-full roster for the first time since Mark Jackson was doing the shimmy down Meridian. With Troy Murphy posting a comeback (a solid 12-point, 10-rebound debut) during last night's 105-95 loss to the Cavaliers after a six-game absence, the other White Ambulance Brigade members are planning their comebacks as well.

IndyStar reporter Mike Wells notes that Jeff Foster is set to play in Sunday's game at Charlotte. Mike Dunleavy could see limited minutes in Wednesday's game against Washington. Only Travis Diener announced bad news regarding his nasty toe injury -- the point guard is out 4-6 weeks after having surgery on his left big toe.

Foster and Dunleavy's return will obviously be not only important for their on-court presence, but their off-the-court manner and leadership could do wonders to keep this team aloft during the fourth quarter and in practice. Instead of seeing Danny Granger slumped over on the bench during a late-game collapse, Foster and Dunleavy will hopefully help start a resurgence for the team psyche in their jerseys rather than in their stylish suits.

So if you're down in the dumps after the Pacers slumped over and played opossum in the fourth quarter for the second straight loss, well, there's hopefully some veterans who can help remedy that problem. I mean, we're bringing back guys who know how to squander leads in the third quarter, but who also have a history of fun comebacks in the final period. Combine them with guys who know how to dominate third quarters, but can't do anything in the fourth and, well, you've got a second-half team my friend.

While you're waiting for these guys to return to action, check out the jump for links to reports on last night's loss, LeBron's domination, and Jamaal Tinsley's debut week in Memphis.

"He had a big night -- his will and ability to attack . . . when he does that he makes us good. It not only makes us good offensively, but it gives us energy defensively. The shots he takes, there aren't many guys who can take and make those. People ask me every once in a while, 'You think LeBron's taking bad shots?' You have to be careful when you have a player like that. If he wasn't taking and making those shots, we wouldn't win a lot of games. . . . Sometimes the best coaching is to get out his way." -- Mike Brown