Coming off of a stellar offensive performance during Saturday's win against the Chicago Bulls, the Indiana Pacers finally have some, very minor, momentum heading into their four-game Western road trip this week. Danny Granger is a scoring machine again, banking 30 points last night. And the offensive flow created by Earl Watson and T.J. Ford last night was a sign of a team finally comfortable in its own skin.
But as the blue and gold try to grow and learn from another trip out West, the team will still be missing a key young player who needs the experience most of all, and now coach Jim O'Brien has noted he doesn't expect the rookie back at all this season.
According to the Indianapolis Star, O'Brien doesn't see Tyler Hansbrough running up and down the court again in the final two months of the regular season.
Apparently the Inner Ear Infection From Hell is still causing the power forward issues and by the time he recovers, it will be too late to get Hansbrough in any condition to play. He's missed 23 of the past 27 games and he hasn't attempted or completed any on-court action since the start of February.
O'Brien told Mike Wells the following: "I don't think there's been an official announcement, but it would not surprise me not to have him the rest of the year. I'm not counting on him to be back. He's dealing with a tough situation. It's getting deep into the season. He's unable to practice and condition. He would have to get himself in condition again if he got better within the next three weeks. That's a tough situation."
When Hansbrough was asked when he planned to be back, the rookie gave one of the better quotes of the season: "I'll be back when I get back." Fantastic.
Hansbrough is averaging 8.5 points and 4.8 rebounds in 29 games. It seems that, without a doubt, we won't see Hansbrough play again until the Summer League. To brighten your spirits with news regarding a Pacers' win, check out the links after the jump.
- AP Story
- Box Score
- NBA.com Recap
PACERS: Inside the Game: Pacers 100, Bulls 90
Bruno's Inside the Game report has all of the numbers, notes, quotes and highlights.
Pacers head out West with spring in their step
Mike Wells writes that the Pacers finally played last night the way they should have been playing all season.
IndyStar.com | Pacers Insider | The Indianapolis Star
In his blog post, Wells reports on the consistent offensive flow that point guards Earl Watson and T.J. Ford helped create in Saturday's win.
With good movement and good passing, Indiana Pacers surprise Chicago Bulls, 100-90
John Oehser recaps the game noting the passing of the team's playmakers.
Sluggish Bulls can't keep up with Indiana :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES :: Bulls
The Chicago Sun-Times offers up a recap from the Bulls' perspective.
Banged-up Chicago Bulls fall 100-90 - chicagotribune.com
The Chicago Tribune lists the multitude of injuries plaguing the Bulls' lineup.
"Winning Time" Rivalry With Knicks Defined Pacers, Reggie Miller
IndySportsNation offers up video and a nice recap of the excitement at the Fieldhouse on Friday night when Reggie Miller was back in town.
Jim O'Brien: Booed at UD, cheered in NBA
Very interesting story from the Dayton Daily News about coach Jim O'Brien reflecting on his tenure as coach at the University of Dayton, which did end so well JoB.