While few expected the Atlanta Hawks to take the Indiana Pacers to seven games in the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs, many understood it wasn’t exactly an easy matchup for Indiana.
That ended up proving to be incredibly true as it took every ounce of the Pacers to hold off the Hawks before moving on to the NBA’s second round. That of course didn’t start so well for Indiana as they were rocked by Bradley Beal and the Washington Wizards, prompting Hawks guard Jeff Teague to suggest Atlanta laid out the blueprint on how to defeat the Eastern Conference’s top seed.
I’m not sure having a center who can pull Roy Hibbert away from the basket is exactly a blueprint, especially given the Pacers have been in a rather odd free fall for quite some time. Still, it seems to be a plan that has been effective for both teams, even though Atlanta couldn’t pull off the upset.