The Hawks kept the same starting lineup for Game 2 of their first-round playoff series against the Pacers. Coach Larry Drew chose not to alter his starting unit to get more height or a different defensive assignment on Pacers All-Star Paul George.
Jeff Teague, Devin Harris, Kyle Korver, Josh Smith and Al Horford started the game.
“I think after every game, particularly a game where things don’t go as well (you consider change),” Drew said Wednesday morning. “It’s not time for us to panic. From a lineup standpoint I want to stay with what has been good for us. Obviously, through the course of the game we’ll make changes. At times we’ll be smaller. At times we’ll be a little bigger. It’s definitely not a time to panic and shift things around.”
The Hawks lost Game 1 107-90 on Sunday as they were outrebounded by 16, and the Pacers went to the free-throw line 20 more times.
“I didn’t think that (the matchup with 7-foot-2 Roy Hibbert) hurt us,” Horford said. “For all of us, we need to do better.”
Emotional playoffs: Drew said before Game 2 that he wanted to see his team focus on the game and not get caught up in the number of foul calls against them. Several players were animated in their reaction to perceived bad calls in Game 1.
“It kills us,” Drew said. “This isn’t the first time this has happened. We’ve been hammering that from Day 1. … We are professionals. They are professionals. They know that when they go out and play whether they feel like a call has been missed, it happens to everybody.
“We can’t be a team that is going to respond to calls and allow that to take us out of being who we are.”
The Pacers were 30-of-34 from the free-throw line in Game 1, and the Hawks were 7-of-14.
“Playoffs are emotional,” Horford said. “I think that if you take that away from the game, it’s not natural. I feel like to everything there is reaction. We just need to be probably a little better at controlling those, but there is still going to be a natural reaction. Everything means more. Everything is bigger. You can’t get too bent out of shape because you see that your guys care. I just think that we can’t let it affect our game.”
Back home: The best-of-seven series continues Saturday with Game 3 at Philips Arena, where the Hawks have won the past 11 games against the Pacers.