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View Full Version : Larry Bird and the job he has done.



Young
12-07-2007, 03:16 PM
The Larry Bird era has been underway for 4 seasons now. I have sometimes thought that Larry would be great but then there have been times where I go WTF and wonder about his decision making. (but hey I guess he is just unproven)

But thus far, how would you rate Bird as a GM? Are you comfortable with him leading this franchise?

Lets look at what he has done since becoming the President of Basketball Operations. And i'll note it is kind of hard to judge due to the presence of Donnie Walsh.

2003-2004
- S&T Brad Miller, Ron Mercer for Scot Pollard and Danny Ferry.
Many were upset with this move it seemed. I was not. Brad was going to walk to Utah or Denver but instead we got something for him. I just wish Scot would have been healthy. Even though he struggled for a little bit he was a really good team defender for us. No star but I really liked the big man tandem of Jeff and Scot, I just wish both would have been healthy.

I liked this move. The only complament I have is that we let Hedo get sent to San Antonio and I would have liked to have him. But I guess getting Danny was cutting salary.

Good move to make. Better getting something instead of nothing.

- Fired Isiah Thomas, named Rick Carlise the new head coach.
Loved the move. Easy one to make. IT was not good in the win column. I just keep thinking of what might have been those first two years with Rick as our coach. What if Detroit hadn't gotten Rasheed? What if Jamaal and Jermaine weren't playing hurt against the Pistons in the Conference Finals? What if Taysan Prince never blocked Reggie's layup? For some reason that was a key play that series to me. What if the brawl never happened? Anyhow good move by Bird here.

- Signed Kenny Anderson, Anthony Johnson
Both were solid for us. They played better under Rick than Jamaal. Nice backups. I guess Kenny ended up starting.

2004-2005
- Drafted David Harrison
Wasn't a terrible pick. Although DH hasn't worked out thus far there wasn't much picked after him. Anderson Vareajo maybe. Although I will say I was hoping for Chris Duhon Bird didn't miss out on anyone to good.

Not a good pick. But I can't say I think it was a bad one either.

- Traded Al Harrington for Stephen Jackson
Good move. We needed outside shooting and Al didn't want to be the 6th man. Stephen had just won a championship with the Spurs the year before he signed with Atlanta and was known for hitting big shots.

This really was the season of hell. With the brawl and all. It's to bad.

2005-2006
- Drafted Danny Granger, Erazem Lorbek
Drafting Danny was an easy pick. So good job by Bird for not doing anything stupid. Still waiting to see if Erazem works out or not.

- Signed Sarunas Jasikevecius
I had high hopes for Sarunas. He was bad in the NBA though. I was dead wrong about him and so was Larry. Bad signing.

- Traded James Jones to Phoenix for a 2nd round draft pick
I really liked James, still like him. But we had/have enough forwards so it's always nice to get something instead of letting a player walk for nothing.

- Traded Ron Artest for Peja Stojakovic
Not a good trade talent wise. Ron is much more complete. But so much turmoil surronded him and this team. Peja was equal to him in terms of talent and production but injuries had already taken a toll on Peja. A trade that had to be made though.

2006-2007
- Drafted Shawne Williams and James White
Well I wanted a point guard so bad. Still think that Lowry or Rondo would be nice but it has worked out for the best. Great pick by Bird to take Shawne. Trading up for James pissed me off. Stupid to trade up for a guy that you end up waiving a few months later. Just thankful it was only for a couple of second round picks.

- Traded Austin Croshere for Marquis Daniels
Good move. Austin was a nice veteran but heading downhill. Marquis is very talented and versatile.

- Traded Anthony Johnson for Darrell Armstrong, Rawle Marshall, and Josh Powell.
I like the move. I am dissappointed it didn't work out as well as I had hoped. DA didn't really work out. He played well but never had the impact on the locker room it seemed that I had hoped for. Rawle and Josh were cheap and had some talent.

- Signed Maceo Baston
Good move. I like what Maceo gave us when he played. I would like to see him play 20 minutes for the team we have now. Cheap, solid backup.

- Traded a 1rst round pick for Al Harrington
To me this showed that we wanted to win. We had to add talent after losing Peja for nothing but cash basically. Al didn't really complament Jermaine well when he was here the first time and we should have known this but I think Al was the best opition avaliable.

- Traded Stephen Jackson, Al Harrington, Josh Powell, for Mike Dunleavy, Troy Murphy, and Ike Diogu
Kind of like the Ron for Peja deal, it had to be made. This looked like an awful trade for us after we miss the playoffs and the Warriors make it as the 8th seed and knock off the number 1 seeded Mavericks. However after naming Jim O'Brien as coach I think it's been a great trade for us.

I think this was a very interesting off season. Pretty much everything we did we wanted to get more athletic. This was obvious which after the trade with the Warriors it made me question Bird.

2007-2008
- Fired Rick Carlise, named Jim O'Brien as head coach
Usually I feel that coaches in the NBA get blamed and fired way to much but this was one that needed to be made. Rick lost the team. It's as simple as that.

However Bird couldn't just go out and hire any head coach. He hired Jim. Who just personality wise does not seem the same as Rick at all. With the players that we have this is a good thing. Now if Larry had hired say Eric Musselman (don't know how you spell his last name) I would have been pissed. But Jim seems like a great hire. And I really like having Dick Harter and Lester Conner as assistant coaches.

- Traded for draft rights to Stanko Barac
We will see if this guy ever contributes for us.

- Signed Kareem Rush, Andre Owens, Stephen Graham, and Travis Diener
I like these signings. One thing I feel this team has lacked is pure shooters. Kareem and Travis can give us some pure shooting. And they are cheap. They have struggled but I feel they will find their shots. Andre is alright, just a 3rd stringer. Same with Stephen. You can't expect to much from third stringers.

I will say that I like what Larry has done. After this past off season I will say that naming Jim as our new coach has been a great hire. And no it's not because we are winning because we are .500 or not even. But Jim is just a fresh approach to the game. I think he is having a real positive impact. I think that the hiring of Jim can make the trade with Golden State work out good for us if Mike Dunleavy can keep up his play and if Ike Diogu can produce for us when he gets back.

Larry had some tough times to deal with. The brawl, the trouble surronding this team. But I like what Larry has done with this team. Sure signing Saras was bad, and trading some second round picks for James White was not very smart I would say that is probably the worst thing that Larry has done.

I'm more comfortable with Larry making the decisions for this team more so then I was before. I just hope he can build on this team and put a winning team together.

McKeyFan
12-07-2007, 03:40 PM
Pretty positive spin. I like your arguments, though.

I wish we had kept Brad. Is there a scenario in hindsight, money wise, that would have worked?

I wish Bird would have had better instincts for the inevitable ramifications of Jackson's bad attitude, both before he acquired him and a year or two into it.

Same with Ron.

I guess I'm saying that maybe we can't just cite "the Brawl" as an incident of fate totally unconnected to Bird's decisions.

And have you considered contract extensions in your evaluation? Whose contracts have been extended on Bird's watch? The extensions of Tinsley and Bender have hurt us greatly.

Since86
12-07-2007, 04:04 PM
To be completely fair, this is really the only season with Larry's hands. Donnie was in the drivers seat, or was atleast the driving instructor who could take control at any minute.

I think it's a little unfair to give him any credit or blame for the past three seasons.

naptownmenace
12-07-2007, 04:10 PM
2003-2004
- S&T Brad Miller, Ron Mercer for Scot Pollard and Danny Ferry.
Many were upset with this move it seemed. I was not. Brad was going to walk to Utah or Denver but instead we got something for him. I just wish Scot would have been healthy. Even though he struggled for a little bit he was a really good team defender for us. No star but I really liked the big man tandem of Jeff and Scot, I just wish both would have been healthy.

I liked this move. The only complament I have is that we let Hedo get sent to San Antonio and I would have liked to have him. But I guess getting Danny was cutting salary.

Good move to make. Better getting something instead of nothing.



I hate this trade to this day and you can't ignore that Brad wanted to stay in Indiana. His deal isn't that much more than what we're paying Troy Murphy or at the time Austin Croshere. I'm especially disappointed when I see Hedo Turkoglu lighting it up in Orlando. You can't tell me the Pacers couldn't have used Turk during the series against the Pistons in '04 or during the lineup depleted brawl season.

You forgot the Ron Artest trade for Peja - which I still think was a pretty good deal considering. I'm okay with pretty much everything else you said regarding the other transactions though. I give Bird a lot of credit for firing IT and the trade to get Quis. Overall, he's made more positive moves than negative ones.

BoomBaby31
12-07-2007, 06:52 PM
Overall Bird has dealt with some difficult times and we are still .500 even during those unfortunate circumstances. We had disgruntle players and he got the best that we could get for them. Just because Steven Jackson is doing decent with G.S doesn't mean he'd be doing the same for us. Same for Artest. The only move I didn't like, was bringing back AL Harrington for our #1 pick. Overall Bird has done a really good job IMO. I could probably think of 10 GMs that could of killed our franchise for the next 5 years.

Young
12-07-2007, 10:29 PM
And have you considered contract extensions in your evaluation? Whose contracts have been extended on Bird's watch? The extensions of Tinsley and Bender have hurt us greatly.

Yeah I believe that the only extension Bird has given is to Jamaal.

I believe that Donnie gave Bender, Ron, and Jeff extensions before the 2002-2003 season. I think that having Bender signed to an extension was bad considering how injury prone he was and the fact that is probably the reason we lost Brad.

And naptown I believe that if we would have re-signed Brad, atleast to the contract he received, that we would have been over the luxury tax which the Simions don't want to pay. And if we have gotten Hedo instead of waiving Danny Ferry it might have still put us in the LT territory.

So sure I would have liked to keep Brad. I'm sure Bird would have and Donnie too. I just don't think we could have done that without going over the luxury tax. So I think that getting a solid veteran like Scot is much better then getting nothing at all.

Young
12-07-2007, 10:32 PM
To be completely fair, this is really the only season with Larry's hands. Donnie was in the drivers seat, or was atleast the driving instructor who could take control at any minute.

I think it's a little unfair to give him any credit or blame for the past three seasons.

I agree with you to a point.

I think that Larry was the reason we signed Saras. I also believe that he had a big part in us picking Shawne, doing the trade with Golden State, and defiantly hiring Jim O'Brien.

I think that early on it was more Donnie, or both of them. However later on as of late it has been pretty much all Bird.

aceace
12-07-2007, 10:41 PM
If this season turns out the way I think it will... (no more injuries please) this season may be Birds finest moment. We look better each week. We could easily be tied with Detroit right now. Some tough losses to Phx, Denver, Sonics and Charlotte.

BlueNGold
12-07-2007, 10:49 PM
As for Bird, I assume he is making all the calls because there's no other way to judge him.

In truth, there are some calls we never even hear about. That is, we don't know if Walsh has been flushing foolish or brilliant ideas from Birdman.

All we can see is what the two headed monster has done. That monster is connected at the neck and I consider it to be one entity....so Bird will get the credit or blame for whatever happens. Call it joint ownership.

So far, the two headed monster has had good and bad days. I would say the good days have been more frequent lately, so Bird should get another year in the nest....

McKeyFan
12-07-2007, 10:50 PM
If this season turns out the way I think it will... (no more injuries please) this season may be Birds finest moment. We look better each week. We could easily be tied with Detroit right now. Some tough losses to Phx, Denver, Sonics and Charlotte.

Really, I prefer to hover around 500 or just above until about February, then make a run. Otherwise, you get noticed by the radar and you start to rest on your laurels.

It seems like many of Larry Brown's teams started slow and ended strong.

Young
12-07-2007, 10:54 PM
Really, I prefer to hover around 500 or just above until about February, then make a run. Otherwise, you get noticed by the radar and you start to rest on your laurels.

It seems like many of Larry Brown's teams started slow and ended strong.

Yeah I remember one year, forget the exact season, but anyways we were first in the East and Thomas was the all star coach. After the all star break we were bad. Which part of this may have been the team, and part of it is we were on everyone's radar. But we defiantly were not the same team in April as we were before that all star break.

I think that we will end up much stronger than what we have started. Come March and April I think we fans will be very happy with where this team is at.

Bball
12-08-2007, 03:51 AM
Until Donnie Walsh is no longer affilliated with the Indiana Pacers, I don't see how Bird can be judged on anything. If Walsh doesn't have some input in things, what exactly is he still doing here?

-Bball

Doddage
12-08-2007, 07:37 AM
I disagree with Harrison being a terrible pick in 04; he probably had and has better potential than anyone in the 2nd round, yes, including Varejao.

dlewyus
12-08-2007, 10:36 AM
I really didn't like the decision to give up a 1st round draft pick to get Al Harrington back (and then having the gall to list him as a center). I didn't like it at the time and it really sticks in my craw. I'm ok with the rest of the decisions considering the circumstances at the time they were made. It's just too easy to look back at it with perfect hindsight as many do. Bird has been forced into some tough and unpopular decisions because of the unthinkable behavior of a few players. He has stuck his neck out to show them confidence and support many times only to have it shoved up his butt by players who wouldn't make a pimple on his butt as a player.

CableKC
12-08-2007, 11:25 AM
I completely forgot about Maceo Baston.....but anyone else think that he would have been a solid backup Big Man that would actually fit in JO'Bs offense?

He can run, rebound, provide alot of energy off the bench, block shots and efficiently score in the low-post ( on the few attempts that he would have had ).

Anthem
12-08-2007, 12:17 PM
I completely forgot about Maceo Baston.....but anyone else think that he would have been a solid backup Big Man that would actually fit in JO'Bs offense?

He can run, rebound, provide alot of energy off the bench, block shots and efficiently score in the low-post ( on the few attempts that he would have had ).
Yeah, but when would he have played? I really liked Maceo, but even I'm not so blinded as to think he'd get PT in front of Murphy. Which makes him our sixth-best big man, not counting small forwards.

It's not our big man depth that's hurting us right now.

IndyFan032589
12-09-2007, 12:07 PM
- Fired Isiah Thomas

Good Move.



2004-2005
- Drafted David Harrison
Dumb...but with a #30 pick you don't get much more than that.


- Traded Al Harrington for Stephen Jackson

Still wish we had Jackson...good move.



2005-2006
- Drafted Danny Granger

The only "great" move Bird has made as GM.



- Traded Ron Artest for Peja Stojakovic
Really stupid for numerous reasons.



- Traded Austin Croshere for Marquis Daniels

Good move, but should have traded/not re-signed Croshere a long time ago.





- Traded Stephen Jackson, Al Harrington, Josh Powell, for Mike Dunleavy, Troy Murphy, and Ike Diogu

Worst front office move in the 11 years I've been a Pacers fan, hands down.


2007-2008
- Fired Rick Carlise, named Jim O'Brien as head coach

Pretty good move, so far.



- Traded for draft rights to Stanko Barac
We will see if this guy ever contributes for us.

Bruno Sundov, Primoz Brezec anyone?? That's if he makes it here.



Overall I give Bird D

Dr. Goldfoot
12-09-2007, 01:02 PM
Crosh was an expiring contract that would have freed up some cap space to address the backup point and three point shooting in the offseason. I think with Crosh's $9 mil coming off the books he could've done better than Travis/ Kareem and he probably could have got a player like Marquis that plays more than 50% of the time.

CableKC
12-09-2007, 01:58 PM
Yeah, but when would he have played? I really liked Maceo, but even I'm not so blinded as to think he'd get PT in front of Murphy. Which makes him our sixth-best big man, not counting small forwards.

It's not our big man depth that's hurting us right now.
He would be playing right now right given our injuries....;)

Given a lineup where we have a lineup that tends to get injured......minutes could be found.

I know that we have a deep Frontcourt rotation....I was just thinking that his style of game....hustle, decent defender, rebounder, shotblocker and decent scorer...he would be a good fit for JO'Bs game.

Young
12-09-2007, 03:36 PM
Crosh was an expiring contract that would have freed up some cap space to address the backup point and three point shooting in the offseason. I think with Crosh's $9 mil coming off the books he could've done better than Travis/ Kareem and he probably could have got a player like Marquis that plays more than 50% of the time.

I don't think letting Croshere's contract expire would have done that much for us.

We would have still been over the cap, or not far enough under it to make any big name signings. I don't know if anyone has been avaliable that is better than Marquis at that price to be honest.

About all letting Croshere's contract expire would have done for us is maybe make it easier to sign Granger, Shawne, and Ike to extensions.

SycamoreKen
12-09-2007, 05:02 PM
And naptown I believe that if we would have re-signed Brad, atleast to the contract he received, that we would have been over the luxury tax which the Simions don't want to pay. And if we have gotten Hedo instead of waiving Danny Ferry it might have still put us in the LT territory.



I don't think we could have made the deal without taking Ferry's contract from the Spurs. They had to get Hedo to make it work as well.

Naptown_Seth
12-10-2007, 01:04 AM
To be completely fair, this is really the only season with Larry's hands. Donnie was in the drivers seat, or was atleast the driving instructor who could take control at any minute.

I think it's a little unfair to give him any credit or blame for the past three seasons.
This is basically where this debate ends up going at PD parties too. Saras, yes. Baston, see Saras. Shawne, yes. JOB, yes. Diener, Rush, yes.

Other than that it's apparently all unknowns.


The only "great" move Bird has made as GM.
No. That was painfully obvious. Had he passed on Danny he would have looked like an idiot. It's isn't great to avoid being an idiot. And of course DW was involved in this possibly.

But the next year when Shawne wasn't the obvious choice, wasn't being passed over, wasn't a glaring need at the time with DG and Al still around, and was perhaps drafted a bit early by at least some pre-draft boards, that was a brilliant selection. And we know it's all Bird because he was the one that went to Memphis and saw him play, targeting him as a guy to get very early on. DW might have agreed or whatever, but Bird initiated that view on #4.

Naptown_Seth
12-10-2007, 01:13 AM
I disagree with Harrison being a terrible pick in 04; he probably had and has better potential than anyone in the 2nd round, yes, including Varejao.
Considering the draft slot that was a fine pick. Plenty of #30 picks don't even last a year or two. David is a strong +/- guy this year and is finally showing some maturity. He certainly has monster low post scoring power when he can stay on the court.



I think that having Bender signed to an extension was bad considering how injury prone he was and the fact that is probably the reason we lost Brad.
What history? The guy just came off a 70+ game season and got his extension while still healthy that summer. The risk was on whether his potential would be reached or not, not that he might never play again. THEN he got injured badly. And even after that he returned and showed some signs before going down again.