INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - As the Pacers returned from the All-Star break to embark on the second half of their season, there was no shortage of energy at practice.
Victor Oladipo pranced around the court, singing, making noises resembling a pterodactyl and pretending to be practicing curling.
But goofiness aside, Indiana is locked in on their final 24 games of the season sitting at 5th in the east, 8 games over .500. The team is well aware they've exceeded expectations this season and they have every intention of continuing to do just that.
"It's us against the world and I've felt like that since training camp," Victor Oladipo admitted after practice on Wednesday. "People counted us out. The first half was great but we haven't done nothing yet, we've still got a lot to prove.
"We're not done," Lance Stephenson said. "I think we've got more to show everybody and they're still underestimating us."
A boost for the Pacers in the second half of the season will be the return of Glenn Robinson III. Robinson has been out since mid-October rehabbing his ankle after surgery. Robinson has been cleared to play on Friday against the Hawks, but the key for the small forward will be patience and figuring out where he fits in this rotation.
"We have a rhythm that we have played with all season," Coach McMillan said as he discussed the return of Robinson. "Glenn understands that he has to be patient."
"Obviously I have to fit in with the team," Robinson said after practice. "We've been playing really well and I think I can fit in. But it's up to Nate, how many minutes and what opportunity he gives me."
That first opportunity will be Friday at the Fieldhouse when Indiana faces Atlanta.