Toronto Raptors star players Demar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry have produced sub-par results in their first round playoff matchup with the Indiana Pacers, yet the series remains spilt at two games apiece.
DeRozan has averaged 29.6 percent on shooting from the field so far this series while Lowry has chalked up 32.3 percent from the floor.
“Give Indiana credit, they’ve done a good job on DeMar and Kyle,” said Raptors head coach Dwayne Casey according to Yahoo Sports. “But we haven’t seen their best, they know that and it may not be by scoring points, it may be by moving the basketball, it may be by helping defensively.”
The tone was set for this pivotal game five when a minor fight broke out between Paul George and Jonas Valanciunas with 5:03 left in the fourth quarter. Valanciunas provoked the scuffle with a small shove to George after a pair of free throws from Ian Mahinmi. DeMarre Carroll jumped in as well and all three were issued technical fouls.
Paul George has been the leader for the Pacers offensively, putting up an average of 26.3 points per game this series. George also stacked up 61 points in the first two games held in Toronto with 54.1 percent shooting.
“I think our just general awareness of the ways Jonas is hurting us why we did better in Game 4 and it’s going to be a battle the entire series,” Pacers head coach Frank Vogel said according to Yahoo Sports.
Casey has not been afraid to express his opinion on the officiating throughout the series.
“I’m looking at flagrant fouls, Jonas Valanciunas gets cracked across the head and again I’ve got to get an understanding, and the officials didn’t review it but they were hitting us going through the lane and DeMar DeRozan shoots zero free throws with the same drive,” Casey said according to Yahoo Sports.
Pacers will count on production from forward Myles Turner who was just inserted into the starting lineup in place of Lavoy Allen. A large key for the Pacers will be to crash the boards aggressively which worked wonders for them in their Game 4 victory in which they outrebounded the Raptors for the first time all series.
Ian Mahinmi is probable for appearances in Game 5 after being listed as questionable initially with a back injury. Mahinmi worked up 22 points in Saturdays win.
“Toronto’s a very hostile environment, hostile crowd. Game 5 is going to be about taking their crowd out of the equation,” George said according to Yahoo Sports.
Game 5 will take place on Tuesday evening at the Air Canada Centre in Ontario, Canda. They are set to tip-off at 5 P.M.