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Nate McMillan discusses Pacers’ third-quarter struggles in Game 1 loss to Celtics

Nate McMillan, Pacers

Nate McMillan didn’t have to wait very long to encounter adversity in the 2019 NBA Playoffs. The Boston Celtics trampled McMillan’s Indiana Pacers on Sunday to take a 1-0 lead in their NBA Eastern Conference quarterfinal series. The Pacers scored eight points in the third quarter and 29 in the second half.

McMillan was forced to comment on his team’s struggles against the Celtics.

“We didn’t establish ourselves in that third quarter and the turnovers led to poor execution and we missed some shots,” McMillan told reporters following his team’s Sunday afternoon loss to the Celtics, via Jared Weiss of The Athletic. “I thought we had some open looks in that third quarter and really lost our rhythm. I thought we lost our way in that third quarter.”

With the Pacers losing 84-74 on Sunday afternoon, Indiana will obviously have to rebound in Game 2 if the Eastern Conference franchise wants to avoid falling behind 2-0. With Game 2 scheduled for Wednesday evening, the Pacers could very easily make Game 1 a thing of the past with an impressive performance. They will get two whole days off to study their performance.

If the Pacers are going to strike back in this series, they will need someone to step up at the offensive end of the floor. With star shooting guard Victor Oladipo out for the entire postseason due to a severe leg injury, the Pacers will need at least one player to take over the scoring workload in big moments, or else it could be a quick exit from the playoffs for Indiana.