The Pacers’ vaunted defense, which was giving up roughly 90 points per game before the All-Star break, has yielded 95.8 points in the best-of-seven series and allowed the Hawks to shoot 39.0 percent from beyond the arc.
Players are hoping to find a solution before Thursday.
“We’re used to packing the paint, playing big, playing physical,” George said. “But it’s like playing pickup ball against them, with five perimeter guys. It’s a different feel playing against these guys, we just have to adjust.”
Time is running short.
Even if the Pacers stay alive in Atlanta, where they’ve won only three times in 7½ years, the two-time Central Division champs would need to protect their home court Saturday to advance. They’ve already lost three times at home to the Hawks this season, and they haven’t won two straight games with their regular starting five on the floor since mid-March.
“We can’t think about Game 7. Game 6 is at hand and it’s a must win,” George said. “We can’t think about nothing but Game 6 and if we don’t win, our season’s done. That’s motivation enough right there.”