Paul George Says He Wishes Hibbert Played in Key Game 1 OT Possessions

Jesse DorseyFeatured ColumnistMay 23, 2013

LeBron James blew by Paul George for the game-winning layup in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Finals, the help defense for the Indiana Pacers never showing up, Roy Hibbert sitting 25 feet away on the bench.

It was one of the most criticized moves of the game, Frank Vogel deciding to go with Tyler Hansbrough over Hibbert for the final play.

Hansbrough, George, David West, George Hill and Sam Young were on the court for the play, and when LeBron got the best of George, the only person down low to help out was the 6'6" Young.

LeBron scored and the Pacers lost.

Vogel's reasoning behind benching Hibbert was centered around Chris Bosh's ability to hit a jumper.

"That's the dilemma...when they have Bosh at the five...his ability to space the floor." -Vogel

— KJ_NBA (@KJ_NBA) May 23, 2013

He definitely makes sense, as the fleet-footed Hansbrough is a better option than Hibbert to chase Bosh around on a single possession, but you can't overcompensate for a team's third option when its first option is LeBron James.

Similarly, on the first go-ahead layup that LeBron hit in overtime, George was on the floor with Hill, Lance Stephenson, Young and West, Hibbert chilling on the bench.

The reaction from most was utter shock that Vogel left Hibbert on the bench for those two huge plays, especially since LeBron scored at the rim on both plays.

George wished Roy Hibbert was on the floor at the end: "Yeah, I think we all would. 100 percent he would've been there."

— Tom Haberstroh (@tomhaberstroh) May 23, 2013

Thankfully for the bamboozled Pacers fans, Vogel is man enough to admit when he's made a mistake.

Pacers Coach Frank Vogel on Roy Hibbert at the end of the game: "I would say we'll probably have him in next time."

— Rachel Nichols (@Rachel__Nichols) May 23, 2013

Besides the desire for Hibbert to be in the game late, there was one other big takeaway from George's press conference.

You know what the problem is when you wear a silly shirt to a basketball game?

Paul George postgame podium look: twitter.com/BeyondTheBuzze…

— Beyond The Buzzer(@BeyondTheBuzzer) May 23, 2013

When you look like this, it's hard to get much sympathy from the people watching.

Next time these two meet, let's all hope for a lot more crunch-time Hibbert and a lot fewer amoebas on shirts.