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NuffSaid
06-10-2008, 01:57 PM
In the "Four Questions..." thread, sCleva wrote:


The issue for (the) Indiana (Pacers) is bigger than JO - it's that they haven't fully embraced an identity as a franchise. A direction and style of play they will stick to for the long haul, not just a couple of seasons.

In Boston you got the grit. Where team unity and the Celtic way is bigger than any player. Where history is always hanging over the door. Where iconic players are a must. They are successful they have embraced that - from the 60s, the 80s and now. Bad times were when they just were trying anything. No they didn't have the stars but they were trying uptempo, or young guys, or tanking for picks. Got to just going for broke with stars and they are back again. 16 titles.

With LA, you know you are going to get exciting, uptempo basketball. They draft players for style, acquire coaches, make trades - everything is done in a Hollywood manner. 14 titles.

For SA, they have embodied the style and class of their franchise player Davd Robinson and it trickled down to Popovich and Duncan. Now, its impossible to imagine the Spurs not having a roster where character isn't important, where they play a defensive style game and excel in the mental aspect. 4 titles.

Detroit always is at their best with their lunchpale, hardnose mentality that is embraced by their fan base. Where after they knock you down they are more likely to spit on you than help you up. 3 titles.

Whats more, everyone knows what to expect when they go to these franchises - from top on down, regardless of coach or star, they know what it means to play "Celtics/Lakers/Pistons Basketball". To exert that will on a team.

For short period of times, other franchises attached themselves to a style and had success - Knicks under Riley/JVG, Miami under Riley/everyone he threw under a buss, Sac under Adelman, Phoenix under D'Antoni until Kerr got there. For the Pacers to find success they need to match a vision with the ideals of ownership and their fanbase and then make every player, coaching, and management move to support that. If not, it will be forever mediocrity. For a while, with Reggie in his prime the Pacers had it but that style has gone far to the wayside.

So back to JO - Indiana needs to come to a hard line of figuring what style of play and what direction they want their franchise to be - not in 1 or 2 years, but in 10 years ...
I've been thinking about this very issue since about a month before the season ended, and 2Cleva's right. I remember my Pacers of the 80's and 90's being a pretty solid, fundamental basketball team that relied on a motion offense. We had screeners and cutters and slasher. There was a pretty strong 3-pronged offense that put Rik Smits, Reggie Miller and Mark Jackson all on the map. If you doubled up on Rik, he'd kick the ball out to Reggie who'd drain the 3. If you defended Reggie well enough, he'd get the ball back in Jax' hands where he'd either get inside the lanes for the score or he'd find somebody else to do it. And Rik...what can I say. When the guy's feet weren't killing him he had some of the smoothest post moves I'd ever saw. And then there was toughness!

The Davis Boys were a true defensive force to be reckoned with.

And least not forget this team did have its share of shooters. Besides Reggie, there was Chuck Persons, Sam Perkins and Chris Mullins. But Reggie was Mr. Clutch.

So, what's the identity of Pacers basketball now? Under RC, it became a series of half-court sets. Alittle slow for my taste, but it was effective...for a while until the wheels fell off (brawl, Testies trade demand...:( ). But I believe Bird made the right choice to hire Jim O'Brien as the next coach. He comes across as the type of guy who won't hold any punches with his players. I also believe that he, like RC, has that unique ability to tap into the team's strengths and try to use them to their advantage. That's why I wasn't too hard on him when he made the switch; he knew it was this team's best chance to win ball games. Still, 2Cleva is correct. Coming into last season the only thing most people identified this team with was off-court troubles. But that's about to change.

Bird started the process of getting back to Pacers basketball last season when he hired JOB. Herb Simon has stepped in to lead the way, to outline the standards and set the tone. It's up to Jim Morris to market those ideals, those Pacers traditions, to the fans, for Bird and Morway to find the players who will uphold those ideals and for JOB to bring focus and clarity to the players on those ideals. When all of those things come together is when "Pacers basketball" will return.

Since86
06-10-2008, 02:04 PM
In short?

Doesn't matter. The identity will change again when JOB is shown the door, which is a matter of when not if. He's not a long term coach. He's a bandaid, and a bad one at that.

Putnam
06-10-2008, 02:25 PM
I like the way you form the question: teams with dynasties seem to always win the same way, even across decades and with complete changes of line-up. You can switch Tim Duncan for David Robinson but the Spurs are the same kind of team. In Detroit, Lambier gives way to R. Wallace but the Pistons are still the bad guys. (I note you don't mention Chicago, whose identity is, "Draft the greatest player in the game, and the commissioner will give you to a series of titles so the star's face can appear on TV commercials and cereal boxes." If what some people are saying about D. Rose is true, the Bulls are on their way to a second series of titles on their old principle.)



The Pacers?

We can't talk about the unique way that the Pacers win NBA titles, since they've never won one. The good teams of the 90s never won a title, so, much as we enjoyed them, they may be our template for coming up short rather than our template for victory.




Maybe the "Pacer Way" is all about hard running and crisp passing, two-handed set shots from mid-range, short shorts and Chuck Taylor All-Stars.

Unclebuck
06-10-2008, 02:38 PM
In short?

Doesn't matter. The identity will change again when JOB is shown the door, which is a matter of when not if. He's not a long term coach. He's a bandaid, and a bad one at that.

You could say the exact same thing about every other coach in the NBA except Popovich, Sloan and maybe Jackson. Every other coach is not a loing term coach

Funny how everyone 12 months ago was thinking how terrible a coach Doc Rivers was.

2Cleva
06-10-2008, 02:41 PM
Thanks NuffSaid for the props.

Putnam - I don't believe you have to win rings to have an identity. Phoenix had a succesful one under D'Antoni with "Seven Seconds or Less". Sacramento had one with their passing and Princeton offense. NY had one with the grind of Riley/JVG.

Even if they tried to build the team like it was under the Miller era - knowing that they are going to run a lot of screens for shooters, a PG who gets everyone the ball, and just physical guys inside, and then just embody that style it at least gives a steady vision of the team whether its good times or bad.

grace
06-10-2008, 02:41 PM
Funny how everyone 12 months ago was thinking how terrible a coach Doc Rivers was.


I don't think I ever said Doc was terrible. His team just sucked.

Dr. Goldfoot
06-10-2008, 02:45 PM
In short?

Doesn't matter. The identity will change again when JOB is shown the door, which is a matter of when not if. He's not a long term coach. He's a bandaid, and a bad one at that.

I agree with you entirely. He is a band-aid and a bad one.

The real problem isn't identity but personnel. Not just players either. The coaching sequence was out of order. Carlisle should have succeeded Bird instead of Thomas, but Brown should have taken the reigns after Zeke not Rick and I feel they should have gone with new blood instead of JOB. Right now the roster is completely devoid of talent. The point position is ridiculous. There are no two's. There's a glut of above average players at the three ( which every team in the NBA can claim). The four is up in the air due to JO's problems ( health & salary) and there isn't a starting quality center in the zip code. There are a few good players but they are best described as role players.

We wont be able to define "Pacer basketball" until the franchise decides what the hell they are doing.

Are they gonna run?
Slow it down?
Add pieces to complement JO?
Address the point (is Tinsley gonna be here for three years or are they gonna get a new guy in the draft or are they really that far behind the eight-ball that Diener is running the show in their vision)?
Rebuild from scratch?
Clear up cap space?
Trade talent for character?
Address the center situation that Smits retirement left them in 8 seasons ago?
Continue to use a small forward rotation to fill the shooting guard position?
Define defense and acquire players that understand that definition?
Are they gonna continue making decisions based on PR?(Bird, Zeke, Smooth,Harrington, Dale Davis(second tenure), The Rifleman as defensive coach????? (Hell, did the strength and conditioning coach sign his contract in mayonnaise?)

Hmmm, got off topic there I guess but oh well.

Hicks
06-10-2008, 02:54 PM
Unless you keep the same coach for a LONG stretch of time, you are likely to have different identities under different coaches, and with different rosters.

The only identity I see with the Pacers is that its fan base has a certain set of expectations, but even those are not shared among all of the fans. The ones I am thinking of have to do with character (on/off the court), teams that can shoot, teams that pass, and teams that (of course) win.

Since86
06-10-2008, 03:02 PM
You could say the exact same thing about every other coach in the NBA except Popovich, Sloan and maybe Jackson. Every other coach is not a loing term coach

Funny how everyone 12 months ago was thinking how terrible a coach Doc Rivers was.

Well to be fair, Doc is a bad coach. He just happens to have a front office that practices vodoo and got one sure HOF'er, another borderline HOF'er to go along with another great player in PP. All he had to do was roll the ball out.

I think that list can be added on too, BTW.

Answer this question. Does JOB's system work? I don't think it does. It's an awful offensive system with a defensive system that he can't teach, or doesn't have the players to play it.

The players that are required to play his offensive scheme will get killed in the playoffs. If they will get killed in post season play, why even go down that path?

It was an easy solution, that was made over the freaking phone.

duke dynamite
06-10-2008, 03:07 PM
I don't really think that JOB did a bad job this season. Like the example of Doc Rivers. You need quailty (healthy)players and a consistent game. You need the desire to win. O'Brien isn't the problem of this team. The lack of consistency is.

We have players that are capable of playing in some pretty good games. That is our problem. We need them to play that way in all the games. Not just 5 or 6 out of the season.

avoidingtheclowns
06-10-2008, 03:08 PM
Funny how everyone 12 months ago was thinking how terrible a coach Doc Rivers was.

he still is.

maragin
06-10-2008, 03:09 PM
Funny how everyone 12 months ago was thinking how terrible a coach Doc Rivers was.

I still think Doc Rivers is a terrible coach.

I will give him credit for completely turning the defense over to his assistants this year. If he could completely turn over rotations and clock management to someone who knows what they're doing, they'd be unstoppable. He was abysmal during the 24 win season last year, down from 33 in '05-'06.

I count Doc as a bottom 10 coach. Credit Ainge if they win a title this year.

Unclebuck
06-10-2008, 03:12 PM
Not to take this off on a Doc tangent, but I honestly do not understand how anyone who watches this Celtics team play for 5 minutes, could possibly say that he isn't a good coach.

Unless you want to give assistant coach Tom Thibidau all the credit for their defense - but their team defense is a beautiful thing to watch and I always say that team defense is most influenced by coaching.

Pacers defensive system is most similar to the Celtics defensive system. The systems are almost identical

avoidingtheclowns
06-10-2008, 03:16 PM
Not to take this off on a Doc tangent, but I honestly do not understand how anyone who watches this Celtics team play for 5 minutes, could possibly say that he isn't a good coach.

Unless you want to give assistant coach Tom Thibidau all the credit for their defense - but their team defense is a beautiful thing to watch and I always say that team defense is most influenced by coaching.

Pacers defensive system is most similar to the Celtics defensive system. The systems are almost identical

i do indeed-that and KG's inherent defensive abilities/intensity.

2Cleva
06-10-2008, 03:18 PM
I don't think it has to do with the longevity of the coach.

LA defined themselves as up-tempo as soon as Dr Buss bought them. Have they had a coach stay on longer than 5 years?

SA was a character organization in the mold of Robinson - bad guys didn't stay long. That was before Popovich came on.

Daly was in Detroit a while before they won but the identity was there right away and it clicked with the fanbase.

Coaching is one aspect but the ownership needs to say THIS is what I want to see on the floor and all focuse needs to be put on that. If the owner doesn't have the vision than whoever is in charge of the team needs to. In this case, Bird needs to define what he believes needs to be Celtics basketball and all moves need to reflect it - no matter what the short term W/L record is or if you get less back for a player than you want. The question the Pacers should ask themselves is "What kind of ball do we want to see and what would our fans want to see" and build a roster based on that concept being paramount.

If you build it, they will come.

Unclebuck
06-10-2008, 03:20 PM
i do indeed-that and KG's inherent defensive abilities/intensity.

KG deserves a ton of credit, but all the players have bought in and for that I give KG a lot of the credit, but the coahcing staff deserves some credit as well, TT for installing it and at least give Doc some credit for emphasizing it, for allowing TT to use practice time to work on it. That good of a defense doesn't happen by accident - and it didn't happen in Minnesota even with KG

Putnam
06-10-2008, 03:23 PM
Bird needs to define what he believes needs to be Celtics basketball and all moves need to reflect it .


Was this intentional?

D-BONE
06-10-2008, 03:54 PM
I agree with you entirely. He is a band-aid and a bad one.

The real problem isn't identity but personnel. Not just players either. The coaching sequence was out of order. Carlisle should have succeeded Bird instead of Thomas, but Brown should have taken the reigns after Zeke not Rick and I feel they should have gone with new blood instead of JOB. Right now the roster is completely devoid of talent. The point position is ridiculous. There are no two's. There's a glut of above average players at the three ( which every team in the NBA can claim). The four is up in the air due to JO's problems ( health & salary) and there isn't a starting quality center in the zip code. There are a few good players but they are best described as role players.

We wont be able to define "Pacer basketball" until the franchise decides what the hell they are doing.

Are they gonna run?
Slow it down?
Add pieces to complement JO?
Address the point (is Tinsley gonna be here for three years or are they gonna get a new guy in the draft or are they really that far behind the eight-ball that Diener is running the show in their vision)?
Rebuild from scratch?
Clear up cap space?
Trade talent for character?
Address the center situation that Smits retirement left them in 8 seasons ago?
Continue to use a small forward rotation to fill the shooting guard position?
Define defense and acquire players that understand that definition?
Are they gonna continue making decisions based on PR?(Bird, Zeke, Smooth,Harrington, Dale Davis(second tenure), The Rifleman as defensive coach????? (Hell, did the strength and conditioning coach sign his contract in mayonnaise?)

Hmmm, got off topic there I guess but oh well.

Off topic? I don't think so. Excellent demonstration of how things have evolved into the current disarray. Now, maybe we can say the franchise's decison making has gone completely OT and managed to muddle whatever identity had been established through the 90s up to 2000.

The post-finals era makeover was not completely misguided. I agree it would have been much simpler to just go from Bird to Carlisle. As far as personnel though, talent and style-wise the bunch they put together, even after the addition of Jackson, could have worked. Obviously, the bigger problems were the pairings of personalities and the affects of physical breakdowns.

Whatever the case, that chapter in Pacer history is mercifully over. Now is the time to make the decisions that you present here. I, too, think JOB is at best a stop gap with a gimmicky offense. Perhaps some some of his player management will instill some guys with solid character traits that will benefit them down the road. I frequently fall back to thinking that maybe the TPTB couldn't find anyone worth a damn who wanted to taking on a team with our baggage.

I think I've made my feeling known in other threads about how the break with the past and the foundation for the future should be made and laid. I'm not quite a trade JO now at any cost type. However, I do think the best thing that can occur is to as swiftly as reasonably possible move out the guys that continue on from the core of the previous turbulent period-Tins and JO. SOME of the trade speculation about JO to this point I think is reasonable enough to justify pulling the trigger.

ChicagoJ
06-10-2008, 03:57 PM
Coaching is one aspect but the ownership needs to say THIS is what I want to see on the floor and all focuse needs to be put on that. If the owner doesn't have the vision than whoever is in charge of the team needs to. In this case, Bird needs to define what he believes needs to be Celtics basketball and all moves need to reflect it - no matter what the short term W/L record is or if you get less back for a player than you want. The question the Pacers should ask themselves is "What kind of ball do we want to see and what would our fans want to see" and build a roster based on that concept being paramount.


And that's the rub.

I'd much rather have Billy Knight defining Pacers basketball. He wore the blue and gold, worked in our front office, was an outstanding member of our community, and paid his dues in Indy, Vancuver, and Atlanta.

As for the Green Guy...

I don't have confidence in his ability to set the vision/ mission of the franchise. Court vision and a sweet jump shot don't help any here. And unlike coaching, he can't delegate the strategic decisions to his assistants. Its his job, and only his job. And that's scary. Many of us don't trust him to make the small decisions, let alone set the big strategy.

ChicagoJ
06-10-2008, 04:03 PM
To the original question:

Pacers basketball is:

(a) Team focused - players agree that the team goals are more important than individual honors

(b) Hard working/ hustle - players that contribute without needing to shoot or score can be heros

(c) High basketball IQ - if the fans can identify blown assignments, missed reads/ passes, etc. then that is a problem. Indiana fans typically have studied the game and know what the players are SUPPOSED to do

However, over the past five/six years, the team has really gotten away from those characteristics.

The question is, is the identity shifting? Or is the team just doing a crappy job of fulfilling its mission?

I happen to think it is the latter.

Those three characteristics were true in the 70s, when the team was winning ABA championships, in the early-80s when the talent level was abyssmal and ownership was cheap, and throughout the Donnie Walsh era, begining with Dr. Jack and all the way through the 1990s.

NuffSaid
06-10-2008, 04:45 PM
Here's a link to an interesting article on the state of the San Antonio Spurs. (Credit to title and author w/date stamp provided for the sake of authenticity)

Are The Spurs Done (http://www.pacersdigest.com/apache2-default/Are The Spurs Done?)?
Authored by Leigh Ellis - June 2, 2008 - 10:03 pm

Althought the article raises some interesting questions concerning the future of their franchise, it also illustrates the importance of sticking with a winning formula no matter whether you have the #1 draft pick or #60.

ABADays
06-10-2008, 08:21 PM
To the original question:

Pacers basketball is:

(a) Team focused - players agree that the team goals are more important than individual honors

(b) Hard working/ hustle - players that contribute without needing to shoot or score can be heros

(c) High basketball IQ - if the fans can identify blown assignments, missed reads/ passes, etc. then that is a problem. Indiana fans typically have studied the game and know what the players are SUPPOSED to do

However, over the past five/six years, the team has really gotten away from those characteristics.

The question is, is the identity shifting? Or is the team just doing a crappy job of fulfilling its mission?

I happen to think it is the latter.

Those three characteristics were true in the 70s, when the team was winning ABA championships, in the early-80s when the talent level was abyssmal and ownership was cheap, and throughout the Donnie Walsh era, begining with Dr. Jack and all the way through the 1990s.

This would probably sum up my feelings as well.

Dece
06-11-2008, 04:14 AM
I liked our identity before the brawl. We were big and tough, people were genuinely concerned about playing us. Artest manhandled people, JO was a big force, Stephen/Reggie/Jamaal and our army of big white guys Pollard/Foster/whoever were taking no crap. That was a great team.

Can we go back to being scary and physical? That's a team identity I like.

ChicagoJ
06-11-2008, 11:19 AM
Can we go back to being scary and physical? That's a team identity I like.

Wow. That sounds more like streetfighting than basketball. You should probably watch more pickup games at the playground, and I'll watch more D-III games. Deal?

D-BONE
06-11-2008, 01:48 PM
I liked our identity before the brawl. We were big and tough, people were genuinely concerned about playing us. Artest manhandled people, JO was a big force, Stephen/Reggie/Jamaal and our army of big white guys Pollard/Foster/whoever were taking no crap. That was a great team.

Can we go back to being scary and physical? That's a team identity I like.

Actually, I know exactly what your talking about. The team was physical and agressive. And, through the very early season and up through that now infamous Pistons game, they had a lot of swagger. They were confident. There was a point playing well within a halfcourt approach (Tinsley's real strenght IMO), outside shooting options, post options, interior and perimeter defensive specialists, and willing bench role players.

From a purely basektball standpoint, it was a formidable group. Like I said, the problem is that there was too much instability, in some cases individually, but also in the group dynamics. It was a disaster of individual and group psychology. Certainly, this only snowballed one the brawl itself occured. The quintessential downward spiral.

QuickRelease
06-11-2008, 02:28 PM
In short?

Doesn't matter. The identity will change again when JOB is shown the door, which is a matter of when not if. He's not a long term coach. He's a bandaid, and a bad one at that.

I think this could pretty much be said of any franchise outside of UTAH and SAN ANTONIO, where the coach has been a bedrock. Styles are specific to coaches, not franchises, so I don't really look at the Pacers as a team without an identity. We know what Obrien wants, and the moves they will make will be to fit his style. Usually, when the coach changes, the style often does the same. Otherwise, franchises generally look for a coach that fits the personnel, and the style remains intact.

Since86
06-11-2008, 02:53 PM
I think you're missing the point.

My point is that establishing an identity under JOB is pointless, because the identity that you're going to have isn't a successful one.

Yes, I agree that teams switch things up when they change coaches. That is fine, I have no problem with it.

The difference between other franchises and Indy is that the identity that JOB wants/teaches doesn't work. It will be unsuccessful in the playoffs.

Did the identity need to change? Most certainly, but just choosing an identity because it is different is totally wrong. If you're going to go through the rebuilding process, then reubuild it right. Take your time, and do it once.

Efforts are going to be made to bring in players that fit JOB's style. Once he's out, there will be another transition period from that style to a style that fits playoff success.

I don't want to see an identity established under JOB, because that identity won't work, and will need to be once again changed.

Take your time, and do it right the first time.

QuickRelease
06-11-2008, 03:04 PM
The difference between other franchises and Indy is that the identity that JOB wants/teaches doesn't work. It will be unsuccessful in the playoffs.

Unsuccessful? Neither Boston, or Philly went to the playoffs after he left until now. It hasn't yet proven to be a championship level scheme, but that doesn't mean that it can't be.

Since86
06-11-2008, 03:45 PM
I think you'll find that a general consenus agrees that trying to outshoot your opponent from the 3pt line doesn't get you very far.

ChicagoJ
06-11-2008, 05:43 PM
Live by the three; die by the three.

Playing 0.500 ball with that strategy is what you expect with a team that shoots 33% or better from that range. If they shoot worse, they won't even hit 0.500 and won't make the playoffs in a weak EC.

The team needed a different person/ personality to coach them. They didn't need a gimmick gameplan like O'Brien's. But they got both. A little too much change from the previous tyrant, probably.

Even then, the team still *should* fall under the identity I set out above:

(a) team work/ sacrifice? Check
(b) hard work/ hustle? Check
(c) high bballIQ? Uh... well, O'Brien thinks so, and he's making a lot more money to be a basketball expert than I'm making to be a finance expert, so take my criticism of reliance on the stupid three-point shot for what its worth...

I still say the identity itself didn't need to change, they just need to do a better job of building around that identity instead of chasing some of the whims that have distracted them in recent years. Jeff Van Gundy's x's and o's, for example, wouldn't have been much different than Rick's, but replacing Rick's lack of communication skills/ personality with JVG's engaging personality would have provided a spark.

BillS
06-11-2008, 07:21 PM
I think you'll find that a general consenus agrees that trying to outshoot your opponent from the 3pt line doesn't get you very far.

If we're talking about how the late-90's teams got where they did, we are definitely talking about jump shots. That team lived and died by the jump shot.

Bball
06-11-2008, 07:49 PM
I think TPTB's short term goal with JOB is simply to reignite some confidence in our wing players to find their shot again instead of being constantly focused on watching JO shoot fadeaways as they stand around.

I'm a little more iffy on the defensive end of things and what the goal is there. I can only assume it is to preach a system above all else and to teach no one is beyond the system and require the players to play defense as a team.... rather than make changes that might play more to these individuals strengths, but hurt the long term goal of getting everyone used to a more team defensive minded system.

I'm also iffy on whether OBrien will have another gear for when the players are ready to tighten things up or whether that is when we'll be changing coaches.

Overall, I think Obrien's first goal has to been to restore the players confidence individually first and foremost.... at least the first 5-6 players.

Since86
06-12-2008, 11:37 AM
If we're talking about how the late-90's teams got where they did, we are definitely talking about jump shots. That team lived and died by the jump shot.

There are big differences between that team, and this one. Mostly at the backcourt positions.

Jackson and Reggie compared to ?? and ?? now. The level at which they understood the game, and the game plan, and their ability to execute it isn't even comparable.

croz24
06-12-2008, 12:33 PM
a joke until they realize they MUST rebuild and start thinking LONG-TERM

BillS
06-12-2008, 02:26 PM
There are big differences between that team, and this one. Mostly at the backcourt positions.

Jackson and Reggie compared to ?? and ?? now. The level at which they understood the game, and the game plan, and their ability to execute it isn't even comparable.

So doesn't that lend some credence to the idea that it isn't the system, it's the players? Therefore, the breaking of the identity isn't really JOB's system, it's that TPTB did not have players like the ones in the "identity years" who are capable of executing it. The solution in that case is to bring in players who fit this already established identity which is, in fact, represented well by JOB as coach.

I don't necessarily agree with this, but it seems a valid argument.

Since86
06-12-2008, 02:46 PM
I think of the Pistons as a jumpshooting team. Where they shoot from and where JOB wants our players to shoot from are totally different.

I see JOB's offensive system as a watered down verision of what has been PHO. If they can't rely on outscoring people with a two time MVP running the show, and all the talent he was surrounded by, is it really a good idea?

Game 3 was 87-81, not 107-101. Being able to grind teams out with high percentage shots, which can be jumpshots from 15ft, and good azz defense is what's proven to be successful.

Kaufman
06-12-2008, 06:47 PM
I don't think NBA teams have identities in the same way as college hoops teams. NBA entities come and go as management changes. The truth is, the identity of the Pacers is what you've got now. Its up to the team and management to make or shape it into something different.

Kstat
06-12-2008, 09:10 PM
I don't think NBA teams have identities in the same way as college hoops teams. NBA entities come and go as management changes. The truth is, the identity of the Pacers is what you've got now. Its up to the team and management to make or shape it into something different.


I both agree and disagree.

While it is true that as management changes, style change, if you go over the course of NBA history, there is one unique style that's worked for the NBA's storied franchises.

Celtics- passing-oriented, transition offense
Lakers- "Showtime." Superstar led fast break attacks.
Sixers- Deep, talented athletic roster
Warriors- Controlled chaos, a roster playing bigger than the sum of its parts
Suns- "seven seconds or less."
Sonics- dominant pressure defense led by the point guard
Bulls- Michael Jordan
Rockets- Inside-out low post offense
Spurs- veteran-laden halfcourt team
Pistons- Defense first, offense second
Knicks- Madison Square garden
Jazz-Jerry Sloan, controlled precision offense
Bucks- Multiple offensive stars, dominant shooting

Most of those trends are multi-generational. Where those franchsies are at their best, that's what they feed off of.

When a lot of these teams have tried to be something different, they've struggled.

IMO, the Pacers were at their best and most successful when they collected the knock-down shooters.

When I think about the Pacers at their best, I think of Miller, Rose, Perkins, Mullin, Smits, Jackson, etc. Guys that could pass and shoot at a very high percentage. 3-point, mid range, FT line, those guys could nail shots from any spot on the floor at their best.

Conseco fieldhouse has great sightlines. It's got soft rims. It has sound dampeners. The whole place was built with shooting in mind.

That doesn't mean the Pacers have to be soft. Dale and Antonio Davis weren't soft, nor was Derrick McKey or Travis Best.

I'm just saying, they should look at what they did when they were a contender almost every year.

I still think it was a mistake to break up the 2000 team. It's not that they shouldn't have gotten younger, but they got younger and changed the identity of the team at the same time. it almost worked, but briefly. I think they would have been better off long term by getting guys that fit the persona of the team, instead of trying to adjust the team to whatever promising talent they could find.

jcouts
06-13-2008, 03:12 PM
Echoing Kstat, if you watch any of the Pacers games when they were in their prime from 1998 through 2000, you will see a definite trend of 2 things:

1. Tough internal presence. With an emphasis on TOUGH. The job of the big men was to set screens, bang inside, rebound and score from the post. Dale Davis did his work inside and stayed out of the way of the perimeter players giving them the space that they needed. If he was on the perimeter, he was leaving bruises and charlie horses on defenders by setting screens.
2. Knock down shooters from the outside without a "forte zone", anywhere from 15 feet to beyond the arc. If any of our shooters were given a shot from anywhere on the floor, no one said to themselves in Bruce Bowen manner "crap, he's not shooting from the corner, there's no way he'll make it...that's not his spot". It didn't matter if it was the top of the key, angles or baseline, if Reggie, Jalen, Chris or Mark were open and in rhythm, you felt good about the shot anywhere they took it from on the floor. When you watch a game of that team in the playoffs, quite often you were left flat out impressed by the outside shooting accuracy. That team had the "you can't leave him open" quality to it. This team has the "we'll dare you to shoot" quality to it.

Right now, we don't have 1 or 2 covered. #1 is lacking in my opinion more than #2. I see very very little toughness on this current Pacers squad, even with JO in the lineup...while I like some of the players, many of them are quite simply pushovers without their ability to impose their will upon anyone. In my opinion, that's the first thing that needs to change in order for the team to get back to playing Pacers basketball and I believe that it starts at the PF spot...one more reason to send JO packing.

Trader Joe
06-13-2008, 03:22 PM
I think one of our number one priorities this offseason should be to find someone to fill a Dale Davis type role. Hulk has the body type, he is just way too unstable.