Shootaround: Vogel Talks About Team Defense; Slowing Raptors' Stars

April 26, 2016 - Pacers head coach Frank Vogel talked to the media before his team's morning shootaround. Vogel discussed his team's defense on 3-pointers, and how they've been able to slow down Toronto's All-Stars.

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Shootaround: Vogel Talks About Team Defense; Slowing Raptors' Stars

April 26, 2016 - Pacers head coach Frank Vogel talked to the media before his team's morning shootaround. Vogel discussed his team's defense on 3-pointers, and how they've been able to slow down Toronto's All-Stars.
Apr 26, 2016  |  01:09

Shootaround: PG on Pacers' Defensive Focus

April 26, 2015 - Pacers forward Paul George speaks with the media the morning of Game 5 in Toronto about Indiana's overall defensive mindset and the successes they've had so far in this series.
Apr 26, 2016  |  04:18

Practice: George on Matchup with DeRozan, Preparing for Game 5

April 25, 2016: After practice, Pacers forward Paul George discussed playing against Toronto's DeMar DeRozan, as well as how the team needs to approach Game 5.
Apr 25, 2016  |  02:35

Practice: Coach Vogel on Returning to Air Canada Centre, Winning the Free Throw Battle

April 25, 2016 - Following Monday's practice at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Pacers head coach Frank Vogel spoke with the media about defending Toronto's stretch-fours, Ian Mahinmi's health, returning to the hostile environment of the Air Canada Centre for Game 5, and winning the free throw battle against the Raptors.
Apr 25, 2016  |  02:24

Practice: Ian Mahinmi on His Health, Seeing Some Minutes with Second Unit

April 25, 2016 - After Monday's practice at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Pacers center Ian Mahinmi spoke with the media about Frank Vogel's growth as a coach, adjusting to a different style of play this season, his lingering back issues, and seeing some extended minutes in Game 4 with the second unit.
Apr 25, 2016  |  02:24

Practice: Vogel On Rotations; Game 5

April 24, 2016 - Pacers head coach Frank Vogel talked about the team's victory over the Raptors in Game 4, and his thoughts on the offensive balance achieved during the win.
Apr 24, 2016  |  03:21

Practice: Paul George on Improved Team Defense, Returning to Hostile Environment in Toronto

April 24, 2016 - After practice on Sunday at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Paul George discussed defending the Raptors' Lowry and DeRozan, the improvements he's noticed in the Pacers' overall team defense, and the importance of winning Game 5 back in a hostile environment in Toronto.
Apr 24, 2016  |  03:00

Practice: Myles Turner on Remaining Effective While Not Shooting Well

April 24, 2016 - Following Sunday's practice at Bankers Life Fieldhouse, Myles Turner spoke with the media about how he was able to remain effective in Saturday's Game 4 victory while simultaneously struggling with his shot in his first career playoff start.
Apr 24, 2016  |  02:14

Practice: G. Hill on Returning To Toronto

April 24, 2016 - Pacers guard George Hill talks about team defense, putting pressure on Toronto, and his thoughts to approaching Game 5.
Apr 24, 2016  |  03:24

Miles Continues To Work and Wait

by Mark Montieth
Pacers.com Writer
@MarkMontieth

For what it's worth, C.J. Miles ended practice on Sunday by hitting at least 18 consecutive 3-point shots on the Teachers Credit Union practice court. And, for what it's worth, he was the last player off the main court after practice on Monday.

Time will tell whether his time and attitude turn out to be worth anything.

Miles has not yet been a factor in the Pacers' playoff series with Toronto, but prepares as if he plans to be. He's scored the not-so-grand total of 15 points over the four games, hitting 6-of-20 field goals and 1-of-11 3-pointers. But he hasn't given up hope for a revival. He knows he can't control his playing time, his role, or how the Raptors defend him, but he can put in the work to keep his shot lubricated, just in case.

"It's going to happen when it happens," he said. "If you play the game the right way and keep respecting the game and keep working and stay ready for the chances you get …"

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Good things can happen. But this isn't what Miles was expecting when he put in more hours than any Pacers player inside The Fieldhouse over the summer. It's not what he was expecting when he opened the season in the small-ball starting lineup and averaged 16.1 points over the first 20 games while hitting 44 percent of his 3-pointers. It's not what he was expecting even after losing his starting position when Myles Turner emerged, or when he missed nine consecutive games with an injury.

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And, it's certainly not what he was expecting after he closed the season by averaging 16 points over the last five games while hitting 18-of-36 3-point attempts.

Miles could be angry, could be frustrated, could be despondent. But all he has to do is glance at the ink on his right arm for perspective. That's where the Serenity Prayer is tattooed:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change,
Courage to change the things I can,
And wisdom to know the difference.

"It's tough because there were a lot of things throughout the season that I didn't see coming," he said. "I didn't see sliding to the four spot and having to learn a different position. I didn't see a lot of things that happened during the season. I just tried to figure out a way to make it work. That's how I'm going to be, that's who I've been, that's why I've been here, that's what I'm still here."

The Pacers plan to try to continue with the sort of balanced offensive attack that enabled George Hill and Ian Mahinmi to score 22 points in Saturday's victory. Miles could be next in line as a beneficiary, as could a few other Pacers who have contributed high-scoring games in the past, but not in this series.

Miles feels like a bit of a marked man. The Raptors know his history as a jump shooter, and are switching off on him coming off screens and staying with him on the weak side. They're a strong defensive team anyway, so nothing comes easily.

He had his best game of the series on Saturday despite hitting just two field goals – an 18-footer off Mahinmi's assist in the second quarter and a tip-in as the third quarter buzzer sounded. But as with Myles Turner, the threat he poses as a shooter contributes something to the offense even when he's not scoring.

"If I'm a decoy, I'm decoy," he said. "Whatever I can do to make space for somebody else … just keep running the stuff like I do to get open and hope they make a mistake. Either I get open or I get somebody else open by cutting hard."

Still, he looks forward to getting into a rhythm and getting a barrage going. It's happened too many times this season for him to think it won't happen again. Such as when he hit 8-of-14 3-pointers over the first two games. Or when he hit 5-of-8 at Chicago. Or when he hit 8-of-9 at Washington. Or 8-of-11 at Portland. Or 5-of-5 against the Raptors. Or 6-of-8 against Cleveland.

He's been watching Kyle Korver in Atlanta's series with Boston to look for new ways to get open when you're a target of the defense, and has been putting up endless shots after practice, more than he can count. That 18-for-18 effort on Sunday might be selling him short, because it might have been viewed after he had already hit a few.

He hit 37 percent of his 3-pointers during the regular season despite playing some games with a shoulder injury, which to his way of thinking means the law of averages could start working at any moment given his 1-of-11 start in this series.

"If I get a couple of clean looks, I know when it rains it pours," he said.


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Note: The contents of this page have not been reviewed or endorsed by the Indiana Pacers. All opinions expressed by Mark Montieth are solely his own and do not reflect the opinions of the Indiana Pacers, their partners, or sponsors.

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