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No Pressure Coach Vogel, But It's Time For Pacers To Win...Starting Tonight

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The Indiana Pacers with freshly-minted, interim head coach, Frank Vogel play the Toronto Raptors tonight. Talk about hitting the ground running. After Vogel was announced as the team's new coach taking over for Jim O'Brien yesterday, he'll be coaching a game on his first full day on job.

Maybe the sudden change will be a good thing for the Pacers. The players should feel a jolt of energy whether in the form of relief or a fresh opportunity to show their worth to the team. Plus, they can't hide behind the consensus that nearly all of the problems the team has had over the past two months was Jim O'Brien's fault.

Considering there will be little Vogel and staff can alter on such short notice, the players won't be asked to do anything unfamiliar tonight. It's just that anything asked of them tonight will come from a different voice. In his introductory news conference, Vogel told everyone to "sttay tuned" to find out how the team will change for the rest of the season. Personally, I can't wait to tune in tonight to see how the team responds to the big change.

The game tonight against Toronto begins a favorable, four-game stretch followed by games at Clevland, home against Portland and then at New Jersey. The Pacers should have a shot at winning all four of those games and if they want to keep those playoff hopes brewing they better start winning tonight.

After the jump, plenty of links with stories about the coaching change.