Very few people would have imagined that the Indiana Pacers would leave the Air Canada Centre with a 13-point loss, but the Toronto Raptors took full advantage of a Pacers team that overlooked them. Their win over the Eastern Conference leading Pacers, gives the Raptors a .500 record and a 2.5 game lead over the Boston Celtics in the Atlantic Division. The Raptors are supposed to be rebuilding after trading Rudy Gay, but this team appears to be poised to host a playoff game.
The Raptors held Indiana to their lowest scoring output of the season, because Paul George struggled in his matchup with Terrence Ross and DeMar DeRozan. Only three Pacers players reached double figure scoring numbers, and it was a tough night overall for Indiana. Every player in the league will have a tough time making shots from time to time, but there is another stat that should be alarming to the Pacers as a team.
Roy Hibbert seems to have lost interest in rebounding over the course of the Pacers’ last three games, and that is inexcusable for a player his size. Hibbert has secured just 5, 2 and 3 rebounds in his past three games respectively, and the Pacers absolutely need him to do a better job cleaning the glass going forward.
In many ways, it seems like the recent success of the Pacers has gone to Hibbert’s head, and he has neglected his rebounding responsibilities. If Indiana wants to continue to be considered in the championship conversation, then Hibbert needs to fight for rebounds the same way he did before he entered the elite post player conversation.
Hibbert only played 21 minutes for the game, but he should be able to grab more than three rebounds in his sleep. Obviously, this is a recent trend as Hibbert averages 8.3 rebounds per game, but this is something to keep an eye on going forward.