The Pacers' blue-collar mentality hasn't gone unnoticed by teams around the league.
They've gone from a team that liked to take a lot of 3-pointers to one that's more rugged and physical in the paint.
"Since the coaching change, they're not looking to shoot the 3 as much," New Jersey coach Avery Johnson said. "They're still capable, but they're looking to play more inside out than outside in. With the four horses they have inside, those guys understand what their jobs are. There's no child's play inside the paint with those guys."
Pacers interim coach Frank Vogel said playing that style gives them their best chance at making the playoffs this season.
"I've been trying to figure out the best use of our talent for 3 1/2 years," Vogel said. "We tried some things with coach O'Brien that I was on board with. Those weren't working. This is an approach I think is necessary to try. I believe it's working."
The Pacers are 4-1 since making the change.
"The old adage in the NBA is that you win with defense and rebounding," guard Mike Dunleavy said. "That's what Coach is trying to stress to us. We need to win in the trenches. That's what we did at the start. I think we're trying to take advantage of our strengths."
HEAT 117, PACERS 112: F LeBron James scored 41 points on 15-of-23 shooting to extend Miami's winning streak to seven games and put an end to Indiana's four-game winning streak. James, who had 26 points in the first half, scored seven of his team's final nine points. C Roy Hibbert had 20 points and 10 rebounds before fouling out.
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