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LeBron James will see several Pacers try to guard him

Guarding LeBron James used to be so easy for Frank Vogel, but now Paul George is not available to shadow LeBron, so how will the Pacers adjust their defensive game plan?

Mike Ehrmann

How to defend LeBron James?

This has been the easiest game-planning question Frank Vogel has had to answer during his time coaching the Pacers. If LeBron was on the court, Paul George was guarding him. Next issue.

Guarding LeBron does not mean stopping LeBron, but PG does it as well as anyone in the league with Roy Hibbert lurking around the rim. So now the Pacers play LeBron and the Cleveland Cavaliers for the first time without PG.

How to defend LeBron James?

Not an easy answer (via

"Everybody is going to get a crack," Vogel said. "Honestly I am going to send multiple defenders at him just to give some of these guys an opportunity. Solomon Hill never got a shot, Rodney and C.J. typically have not had a chance to guard him because they are playing shooting guard. Chris Copeland and Damo (Rudež) haven't had a chance. So I'll probably give everyone a shot to get some experience."

But who will get the first 'crack' at LeBron?

Solo Hill and C.J. Miles are obviously the best options to throw at LeBron with Hill having the chance to show his size and defensive ability should make him the team's defensive go-to-guy. That may be the case regardless of how well LeBron plays, but it would be nice to see Hill show he can be a part of the starting lineup which would free up Miles (or Stuckey) to play a much-need role off the bench to help lead the offense for the reserve unit.

With four preseason games remaining, Vogel will need to start focusing on the first version of his playing rotation. But when it comes to dealing with LeBron, no one guy will get the job done without a team effort pitching into help.