Darron Cummings/Associated Press
Question: Will Roy Hibbert show up?
The Indiana Pacers have forced a Game 7 against the Atlanta Hawks, but it was never supposed to come to that.
At this point, the narrative surrounding the Pacers largely involves Roy Hibbert. The problem is that he's been a story for all the wrong reasons. To put it nicely: He has completely underwhelmed.
As B/R's Stephen Babb recently discussed at length, Hibbert's performance has been anemic on a historic level. The last All-Star to record zero points in consecutive playoff games was Jim King in 1968, per ESPN, and as Babb stated, "The bigger question may be how Hibbert's affected in the long term."
If the rest of the team can step up and play a gritty Game 7, Indiana won't need a bounce-back performance from Hibbert against the Hawks. The problem is, there's no guarantee they close out Atlanta. However, if they do, they'll need the center to step up immediately for Round 2.
Many have called for the benching of Hibbert, and his play on the court has resulted in just 12 minutes per contest in Games 5 and 6. That's bad to a whole new degree, and if the Pacers go out in Round 1, it's going to be the topic of discussion for an entire offseason.