Pacers looking to disrupt Spurs' rhythm in Sunday afternoon matchup

October 29, 2017

Indiana Pacers coach Nate McMillan isn't surprised San Antonio has been winning despite being without Kawhi Leonard and Tony Parker.

"They're 4-1, that's San Antonio," McMillan said. "They're going to execute on both ends of the floor. We have to try to disrupt their rhythm and not allow them to be out there and play comfortable in a sense of running their sets. They are efficient. They are going to run their stuff."

The Pacers (2-3) will play host to the Spurs on Sunday. The Spurs have been playing without Leonard, who is recovering from a right quadriceps tendinopathy. Coach Gregg Popovich said Wednesday it's possible Leonard could return in early November. Parker, the point guard, ruptured a tendon in his left quadriceps during the Western Conference finals, and has begun practicing with Austin, the Spurs' G League affiliate.

"They are going to pound you inside with their bigs, posting up," McMillan said. "They've got LaMarcus (Aldridge), (Pau) Gasol and Rudy Gay, that's a lot of length and a lot of size that they are going to try to pound you inside with."

Pacers center Myles Tuner has been ruled out of Sunday's game with the Spurs with a concussion, which means he will miss his fifth consecutive game. He has not played since the season-opening victory over Denver Oct. 18.

"It's been a challenge," McMillan said. "We already are building and trying to work on chemistry with rotations. Myles is a key part of what we do on both ends of the floor. I think our guys have tried to make that adjustment. It's going to take time. Once Myles gets back, it's still going to take time."

Following a team record-setting shooting (66.7 percent) performance in a 130-107 victory at Minnesota Tuesday night, Indiana lost to Oklahoma City 114-96 Wednesday night.

The Spurs, who will be playing their third game of a four-game road trip, dropped their first game 114-87 at Orlando Friday night.

"I still don't have the feeling we are playing that well," Manu Ginobili told the San Antonio Express-News. "Our offense, I don't think, is really there."

Ginobili described the loss at Orlando Friday night as a terrible performance.

Popovich agreed in his postgame press conference.

"We were very sloppy, but their game plan was great," Popovich said. "Coach (Frank) Vogel did a good job taking us out of what we wanted to do, and they did it for 48 minutes. They outplayed us in every facet of the game."

The Spurs shot 33.7 percent (30 of 89) from the field and 16.7 percent (4 of 24) from 3-point range against the Magic.

"It snowballed," Ginobili said. "They got more confident and we couldn't react because our shots were not falling."

Overall, the Spurs are shooting 43.7 percent from the field and 29.8 percent from 3-point range.

"They play well together," Pacers guard Cory Joseph said. "It's all high-IQ guys on their team. The system they run is very unselfish. That is what they teach and preach out there. Any time you play them, you have to bring your 'A' game because you know they are going to bring theirs. You have to play smart basketball."