The Pacers are going to be shorthanded in their win-or-go-home game against the Hornets on Tuesday night.
As the Pacers confirmed on Twitter before the the game, they have already ruled four players out for the game: T.J. Warren (left foot), Myles Turner (right toe), Caris LeVert (health and safety protocols) and Jeremy Lamb (left knee).
Warren had already been ruled out for the season back in March while Turner was ruled out indefinitely in mid-April, so their absences weren’t too surprising. However, LeVert’s absence due to health and safety protocols was new, and considering he has averaged 20.7 points per game, second most on the Pacers, that is a huge blow for the team.
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The bad news didn’t end there for Indiana. In addition to those four, the Pacers have another four players questionable for the contest. That includes Domantas Sabonis (left quad), Malcolm Brogdon (right hamstring), Aaron Holiday (right toe) and Edmond Sumner (left knee). Of the group, Brogdon, who hasn’t played since April 29, seems to be the most on the fence about playing, though Sabonis, Sumner and Holiday have both missed games in recent weeks as well.
If all of the questionable players were to miss the play-in game, the Pacers would be without the following:
- Their top five scorers; Doug McDermott (13.6 ppg) would be the leading scorer remaining.
- Players that had made a combined 244 starts, 67.8 percent of their season total.
- Four of their top five rebounders; Oshae Brissett (5.5 rpg) would be the top rebounder remaining.
It seems likely that at least some of the questionable players will play, but this just demonstrates how absurdly banged-up this Pacers squad is.
Maybe Indiana can ride some of their depth players in bigger roles to a win over Charlotte. After all, it’s just a one-game series.
However, it’s looking more likely that the Nate Bjorkgren-coached squad is going to have a tough time making anything happen in the play-in tournament. The team is just nowhere close to 100 percent.