Sabonis Injury Update, Pacers Plans for Thursday's Scrimmage

July 22, 2020 - Pacers forward Domantas Sabonis provides an update on his plantar fasciitis and head coach Nate McMillan discusses the plan for the rest of the team for Thursday's scrimmage.

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Sabonis Injury Update, Pacers Plans for Thursday's Scrimmage

July 22, 2020 - Pacers forward Domantas Sabonis provides an update on his plantar fasciitis and head coach Nate McMillan discusses the plan for the rest of the team for Thursday's scrimmage.
Jul 22, 2020  |  02:31

Oladipo: There's a Strong Possibility I Might Play

July 15, 2020 - Pacers All-Star guard Victor Oladipo explains why he is reconsidering his decision to sit out the 2019-20 NBA season restart after participating in practices with the team in Orlando.
Jul 15, 2020  |  02:14

Pacers Having Fun After First Week in Bubble

July 17, 2020 - Pacers head coach Nate McMillan and players Doug McDermott and Aaron Holiday share their takeaways after the first week of practice at the NBA bubble in Orlando.
Jul 17, 2020  |  01:43

McMillan Gives Injury Update as Pacers Prepare for Scrimmages

July 19, 2020 - Pacers head coach Nate McMillan revealed which players are dealing with soft-tissue injuries and T.J. McConnell and T.J. Warren looked ahead to Indiana's first scrimmage in Orlando on Thursday.
Jul 19, 2020  |  02:45

Brogdon Recovered, Back at Practice

July 16, 2020 - Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon and head coach Nate McMillan discuss Brogdon's recovery from COVID-19, why he is wearing a mask at practice, and life in the NBA bubble.
Jul 16, 2020  |  02:06

Myles Turner Feeling Comfortable Back on Court

July 13, 2020 - Pacers head coach Nate McMillan discusses Myles Turner's growth during the 2019-20 season and four-month hiatus and then Turner shares his thoughts on being back on the practice court in Orlando.
Jul 13, 2020  |  01:58

McMillan, Sabonis on Pacers' Conditioning

July 12, 2020 - Pacers head coach Nate McMillan and forward Domantas Sabonis discuss the Pacers' fitness level after holding their first two practices in fourth months.
Jul 12, 2020  |  02:36

McMillan, Brogdon on Team Discussions on Social Injustice

July 16, 2020 - Nate McMillan discusses a team screening of the documentary "13th" and Malcolm Brogdon reflects on discussion among the players about social injustice.
Jul 16, 2020  |  02:11

Jeremy Lamb's Rehab Progressing in Orlando

July 20, 2020 - Despite being out for the season, Pacers guard Jeremy Lamb elected to join his teammates in the NBA bubble. Lamb and coach Nate McMillan discuss his rehab.
Jul 20, 2020  |  02:13

Pacers Come Out of Quarantine for First Practice

July 11, 2020 - After a 48-hour quarantine after arriving at the NBA restart bubble in Orlando, Pacers head coach Nate McMillan and players T.J. Warren and T.J. McConnell spoke with the media following the team's first practice in four months.
Jul 11, 2020  |  02:26

Pacers to Get First Look at New Game Day Experience

by Mark Montieth
Pacers.com Writer
@MarkMontieth

The game will last only 40 minutes, and warmup sessions will be conducted on a separate court so the game surface and surrounding area can be sanitized. The players will have to sit in assigned seats on the bench and wear masks when they're not in the game.

Amid such unprecedented circumstances, the Pacers will play a game tomorrow. Their 3:30 p.m. matchup with Portland at the HP Field House in Orlando will be their first game action since March 10. It's only an exhibition game, the first of three before the Pacers resume their regular season on Aug. 1, but it's a start.

A welcome one, too, given all the rust that has accumulated over the past 4 1/2 months.

Pacers coach Nate McMillan is not revealing his starting lineup and playing rotation until he gets the final report from his training staff on Thursday. Domantas Sabonis is out with plantar fasciitis and Goga Bitadze has not practiced because of muscle soreness, but all other players are possibilities.

"We'll play a lot of guys," was as close as McMillan got to tipping his approach.

McMillan considers Thursday's game — the only one that will run for 40 minutes instead of 48 — a test run for the NBA to determine how to conduct the regular season and playoff games that follow. But it will be important for teams to begin regaining the chemistry and conditioning they left behind when the season was suspended because of COVID-19.

"This thing is going to come quickly," McMillan said. "We only have 11 games to get ready for the playoffs and we have to take advantage of each game that we play."

Sabonis said his foot has been bothering him since he reported to Indianapolis in June for the mandatory practices. He participated in the first three practice sessions in Orlando but not since and has no timetable for a return beyond Thursday's game.

Neither he nor McMillan would comment on the performance of individual players in practice, but both said they have been impressed with the overall level of play.

"All of our guys have worked hard," McMillan said. "I've been somewhat surprised...of course we're not in the shape we need to be but all of our guys have come in and worked extremely hard. (Thursday) is definitely a day we need to play a game."

Sabonis said he thought the team was "practicing at a very high tempo" before he was injured, particularly during their 12-minute scrimmages.

"Everybody looks good," he said. "I can't single anybody out. It's an overall great feeling, that's why I want to get healthy and get out there."

Naz Mitrou-Long, one of the Pacers' two two-way players in Orlando (along with Brian Bowen II) singled out a few teammates in the recent practices.

"Myles (Turner) has definitely looked really good, but I'd be lying if I didn't say Vic (Oladipo) looked good, I'd be lying if I didn't say Malcolm (Brogdon) wasn't back to how he was playing at the beginning of the season," Mitrou-Long said. "T.J. Warren is a walking bucket, everybody knows that."

McMillan's preparation for the upcoming games will include meditation sessions. The players and coaches had an introductory session with a specialist on Wednesday and more are planned.

"We've gone through a lot in the last four or five months, and we've gone through a lot since we arrived in Orlando," McMillan said. "I wanted to have someone teach our guys how to calm yourself down, think about why you're here and the things you want to accomplish as a team.

"We all need it and we all participated. The coaches I thought had some good questions."

According to Mitrou-Long, the players didn't mind, either.

"It was great to do something like that to put a little emphasis on the mental aspect of the game," he said. "It's cool to have a group like we have. Any time we do something, everybody's bought into it and everybody wants to do it together."


Have a question for Mark? Want it to be on Pacers.com? Email him at askmontieth@gmail.com and you could be featured in his next mailbag.

Mark Montieth's book on the formation and groundbreaking seasons of the Pacers, "Reborn: The Pacers and the Return of Pro Basketball to Indianapolis," is available in bookstores throughout Indiana and on Amazon.com.

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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