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IC Cold Links: Schedule Toughens Up For Weary Pacers

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Jim O'Brien opened his post-game presser with a little background on how the Pacers could lose to the Sixers a night after playing well and showing some promise against the Pistons.

"Our guys played exhausted and we got outplayed, no question about it. Our guys are exhausted and they should be. We just played a five week schedule that is taxing. Everyone goes through a schedule that is challenging at some point during the year. We had nine back-to-backs and three sets of four games in five nights in five weeks. It takes its toll but you’ve got to play and you’ve got to win games."

That's a convenient way of deflecting criticism for any follow up questions about the team's execution in turning a 39-33 second quarter lead into a 57-50 halftime deficit en route to the loss. Missed shots? Tired legs. 21 turnovers? Mentally fatigued.

With the thin margin of error the Pacers play with, there's always something to point to as an issue contributing to the win, but the team rarely pulls together to overcome the hurdle placed in their path.

So now the Pacers six games in a row with at least one day off between games, but of course the opponents toughen up as well. After playing at Philly on Monday, the Pacers host the Los Angelese Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers before a home-and-home with Toronto. In other words, no rest for the weary even with the days off.

After the jump, a few links of interest from the game last night. Oh and good luck to the Indianapolis Colts today in their AFC Championship game against the New York Jets!  Stampede Blue has is all covered and I so mean all.