Roy Hibbert blames coach Frank Vogel as Pacers lose to Heat

Roy Hibbert

The NBA all-star center went scoreless in Game 4 and spoke out, while Paul George questioned the referees.

The Indiana Pacers' hopes of reaching the finals are looking slim after losing 102-90 to the Miami Heat, and the team that finished top of the Eastern Conference are looking for excuses.

Roy Hibbert, who failed to score a point from just four shots, said Indiana's game plan wasn't effective in utilising him early on.

He added: “I can only control what I can control. I can't control the plays called for me.”

Pacers forward Paul George, meanwhile, claimed the Heat got “home cooking” on their own floor from the referees, shooting 17 more free throws than the visitors.

The truth is that Miami was simply the more aggressive team on the night, attacking the rim at will. LeBron James, who Lance Stephenson claimed showed “signs of weakness” after firing back with trash talk, took the game over, finishing with 32 points and 10 rebounds.

The Heat looked to get the slumping Chris Bosh going early, and the big man obliged by scoring the first eight points and 17 in the first half.

The Pacers simply cannot hope to match the Heat's big three if their stars do not perform, and that all starts with Hibbert.

For the fourth time in this postseason the all-star center failed to trouble the scorers, and when Hibbert is not getting his shots he does not do enough to impact the game.

One way to react when the ball isn't coming your way is to crash the boards and look for put-backs. Even with Heat center Chris Andersen missing, Hibbert was ineffective on the boards, and at 7ft 2, there is no excuse for him to record just five rebounds.

Indiana's identity is based on their two big men, Hibbert and David West, bullying teams in the post, and it has been shown time and time again that they cannot win if their center is not performing.

It is easy to point the blame at Frank Vogel, and time will tell as to whether the coach will keep his job at the end of this season, but the Pacers' stars must look at themselves and consider whether they are doing enough to help the team's cause.