Mandatory Credit: Douglas Jones-US PRESSWIRE
With his Orlando Magic facing elimination Tuesday night against the Indiana Pacers, coach Stan Van Gundy told the assembled media prior to tipoff "we'll try anything" in order to force the series back to Orlando for a Game Six.
That response came in reference to a question about Van Gundy using a small lineup--with Hedo Turkoglu, a natural small forward, playing power forward--down the stretch of Game Four. The group of Jameer Nelson, J.J. Redick, Jason Richardson, Turkoglu, and Glen Davis scored 26 points in 11 minutes together, shooting 11-of-22 from the floor and committing no turnovers, helping the Magic close a 19-point deficit and force overtime.
That small lineup had logged a total of four minutes in the regular season and three playoff games prior to Saturday's loss, so employing it in a key stretch of Game Four was indeed a risk, but it paid off. As Van Gundy says, there's no guarantee the Pacers will once again not have an answer for that group. But Tuesday's is an elimination game, and so Van Gundy's try-anything mentality is the right one to have.
Game Five between the Magic and Pacers tips off at 7 Eastern on NBA TV nationally and on Fox Sports Florida in the Orlando market.