Pacers adjust to future without starting point guard

The Indiana Pacers are planning on life without Jamaal Tinsley.

The team's starting point guard has been out of the lineup for nearly two months with a mysterious foot injury and has spent nearly a week in Manhattan being examined by a specialist, Dr. William Hamilton, the Indianapolis Star reported. The team expects to hear from Hamilton on Tuesday.

"If he does come back, it's going to be awhile," Pacers coach Rick Carlisle told the paper. "We've got to go on the idea that this may be it as far as who we have available. There's a very slight chance he could return before the season is over."

Meanwhile, Anthony Johnson has been starting in Tinsley's place.

"As far as getting news that guys are going to be out an extended amount of time and may not be able to come back for the rest of year, (it) wouldn't be a surprise for us because we've already mentally adjusted to that," Anthony said.

The Pacers have been without starters Ron Artest and Jermaine O'Neal for most of the season. Artest is serving a season-long suspension, while O'Neal has been out of the lineup since suffering a sprained shoulder on March 3. O'Neal recently started lifting weights and hopes to be back for the playoffs, the paper reported.

"We've been a team all year that's done a good job accepting what our situation is and trying to make the best of it," Carlisle said. "Right now it's no different. We're not going to have Jermaine and Jamaal for at least a couple of weeks. We're going to have to find a way to win with the guys we have. If we play a certain way we give ourselves a chance."