Roy Hibbert sneaks in a short nap before the game. (Getty Images)
Indiana Pacers center Roy Hibbert has not enjoyed his last two trips to Miami. The Defensive Player of the Year frontrunner had to walk out of American Airlines Arena last June after the Heat ended the Indiana Pacers’ season in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference finals, and Wednesday night’s loss to the Heat saw Hibbert having to sit on the bench for over half the game with foul trouble, eventually working a step slow down the stretch because of all the rust developed during that long stretch on the pine. Miami scored 50 points in the paint, the most the top-ranked Indiana defense has given up all year, as the Heat came back from down 15 to take the win.
Still, on his way out of the Heat’s home facility, Hibbert managed to get one Roy Hibbert-esque exercise in. If he couldn’t act as a dominant defender or low post scorer (two very Roy Hibbert-esque exercises) the least he could do was something funny on the way out:
A Roy Hibbert-esque exercise indeed, as he tweeted afterward:
— Roy Hibbert (@Hoya2aPacer) December 19, 2013
It’s also fun to watch Stephen A. Smith’s pointless prattling be rendered meaningless in just two or three Hibbert steps into the camera’s frame. I watched that clip on mute the first time I saw it, and watching SAS’ gesticulations was nearly as funny as watching Roy amble onto screen. It’s also a very Stephen A. Smith exercise that he immediately makes it about himself (“I’m not scared of Roy”) after learning of Hibbert’s move toward the makeshift set.
The Pacers are probably pretty gutted after that loss, knowing they had a chance to steal one on the road even with Hibbert playing just under 23 minutes. Still, even though this team has put together a championship-level of focus in the months since that Game 7 loss, they also know they have over five months between now and another shot at a Game 7 in the Eastern Conference finals. It’s just fine to goof off a bit between now and then, just as long as you keep winning games.
In spite of Wednesday night’s loss, so far so good.
- - - - - - -
- Sports & Recreation
- Roy Hibbert
- Indiana Pacers