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D-BONE
06-14-2011, 08:35 AM
Kravitz: Rick Carlisle once a Pacers' castoff, now a champion

http://www.indystar.com/article/20110614/SPORTS15/106140307/?odyssey=mod|newswell|text|IndyStar.com|p


At one point or another in most of our lives, we get hosed by management. We get a raw deal, maybe from new managers who want to reinvent the wheel, or by long-time bosses who seek to cover their own mistakes, and their derriere, by scapegoating someone.
Which brings me to Rick Carlisle, NBA championship coach, who apparently wasn't quite good enough to make a go of it with the Indiana Pacers.


Carlisle unfairly took the fall for team president Larry Bird and a roster of misbehaving players after the 2006-07 season, and on Sunday night, there he was, standing on the podium with the NBA champion Dallas Mavericks, reveling in a moment he helped make happen.
Good for him. Good for everybody who has ever gotten the short end of the deal from management.


I am always disinclined to say "I told you so" -- it's self-aggrandizing and petty -- but in this case, I'm going to say it: I told you so.
In late April 2007, I wrote a series of columns saying Carlisle was a fall guy and a scapegoat, and this:


"Think about this: Has any head coach in any professional sport been forced to deal with more non-basketball-related nonsense these past three years?


"Soon enough, the ax will fall on Carlisle, leaving him with the option to take another coaching job, join the front office or take a sabbatical. After three years of coaching this eclectic group of humans, he deserves a year off. But my sense is he will end up coaching somewhere else and winning somewhere else."


Yep.


He did OK.


Isn't it amazing how much better a coach Carlisle became when he got away from Ron Artest, Stephen Jackson, Jermaine O'Neal, David Harrison, Jamaal Tinsley and the cast of loonies?
Isn't it amazing how much better a coach Carlisle became when his front office brought in free agents like Tyson Chandler instead of Sarunas Jasikevicius?


Carlisle didn't deserve a pink slip for his four years here; he deserved a Purple Heart.


Again, consider the madness that surrounded his tenure.
He had that great first season in 2003-04, leading the Pacers to a 61-21 record and an Eastern Conference finals appearance against Detroit.
That, though, wasn't his greatest coaching job. The next season brought The Brawl, and somehow -- with a decimated team, with guys coming in off the streets (remember Britton Johnsen?) and players like Fred Jones leading the way -- Carlisle not only got the Pacers to the playoffs, but won a first-round series against Doc Rivers and the Boston Celtics.


The next season, The Brawl continued to resonate in ways that made Carlisle's job next to impossible. The players who stepped up and performed well the previous year were relegated back to the bench, and most failed to accept their diminished roles. And, of course, there was Artest's wigged-out trade request, which forced the Pacers to drop and eventually trade him away. Still, that team made the playoffs with a 41-41 record.


Carlisle's fourth season was doomed before it even started. Training camp opened with the Club Rio affair, followed shortly thereafter by the 8 Seconds Saloon incident and a host of injuries. Now, there were people inside the organization who felt that Carlisle lost control of that team, that he kowtowed to O'Neal and lost the attention of his team as it limped to a 35-47 finish. And there were complaints about his personality, the way he could come across (unintentionally, it seemed to me) as cold, detached and arrogant.


The players didn't like what they viewed as a paint-by-numbers offense that finished last in the league in scoring that final year. They believed they were being shackled, which seems really funny in retrospect when you see how beautifully Dallas' offense runs with a professional point guard and big guys who can rebound.


Whatever Carlisle's culpability might have been, it paled in comparison with the mistakes the front office had made.


And yet, he was fired.


Foolishly.


What Carlisle did this season with the Mavericks ranks as one of the most impressive coaching jobs we've ever seen. He lost his No. 2 scorer, Caron Butler, in January, and later his backup big man, Brendan Haywood, who was in and out of the Finals lineup with a hip pointer.


During the series against Miami, Carlisle hit all the right buttons. He threw zones at the Heat, who couldn't have been more confused if the playbook was written in Mandarin Chinese. He put J.J. Barea in the starting lineup late in the series, where he changed the tempo of the game, and had DeShawn Stevenson come off the bench. And he managed the minutes of his veteran team, leaving his players fresh to knock off Oklahoma City, the L.A. Lakers and Miami.


"This is a special team," Carlisle told reporters Sunday night. "This is the most special team that I've ever been around, because it's not about what you can't do, it's about what you can do. It's not about what your potential shortcomings are, it's what we could accomplish as a group together. And it was just phenomenal to be around them."


It was phenomenal to watch.


Carlisle, it turns out, is a championship-caliber coach.


Just not in Indiana.

DGPR
06-14-2011, 08:51 AM
Carlisle wasn't ever going to win a championship in Indy, because no coach can win a championship with the cast of players we have had the past 4 years. Rick should be happy he was fired from this team (and I'm sure he is now).

xBulletproof
06-14-2011, 08:56 AM
Who's to say Carlisle didn't want out of this place that had become a looney bin those years? It was probably a mutual decision.

Good Lord Kravitz, don't break your arm patting yourself on the back. This isn't something you knew that everyone couldn't see, and you're some sort of genius for it. Silly.

graphic-er
06-14-2011, 09:10 AM
Okay so does Bob just ignore the fact that we were last in scoring his final year? I mean he mentions it but he basically just ignores it. I like RC, but it was clear this group of players back then did not match the coach. That's a failure of management for sure, and Management took the appropriate step to try and correct that by bringing in a new coach. To which they failed again by hiring JOB.

I'm sure the year off gave RC a good chance to reflect on his mistakes here in Indiana. Although, Honestly I'm not convinced that RC has much to do with Dallas's beautiful offense. I mean he has the purest PG in the league. It would be stupid for RC to try and micro-manage Kidd.

PR07
06-14-2011, 09:23 AM
Kravitz isn't saying anything that any knowledgeable fan of the NBA probably didn't think. Carlisle had been successful as a head coach everywhere else he had been, so it was very likely that he'd have success again. He inherited a veteran team full of guys who know how to win, but had just never won it. I doubt he would've had anywhere near the success had he stuck around for our rebuilding years.

I'd like to have him back now, but having him here the past few years, probably doesn't change a whole lot. Maybe we sneak into the playoffs one more time in those few years (and have some less headaches, JOB), but we'd also risk losing our draft position and some of our young assets like Hibbert, George, or Hansbrough. So the "I Told You So", doesn't really do it for me.

thewholefnshow31
06-14-2011, 09:39 AM
I was so glad to see Rick get a championship.

I agreed with Kravitz at the time that Carlisle was jumping on the grenade for the FO. I do not care who you are you are not going to win crap if most of your starters are crazy. Tinsley, Jackson, and Artest were just a bunch of screw ups and how our FO could think any coach could win with that trio is beyond me.

Sadly in the NBA it is easier to part ways with a coach then a player. Someone had to fall on the grenade and it was easier to let Carlisle go then to move Tinsley or Jackson.

What a surprise you can get something done when you have smart team players and do not have a FO who brings in freaking Jasikevicius.

JBones19
06-14-2011, 10:04 AM
This article reminded me of something Clark Kellogg commented on in the breakfast I attended last week. He brought up the Mavs and how he thought they would win the Championship and how happy he was for Rick that he was finding success. He said that since going to Dallas, Rick had done a 180 in how he coached and managed his players citing the fact that when he was here he was VERY meticulous and detailed on how he coached during games, almost to a fault. Remember his play card that he would pull out of his coat during most half court sets? Clark said he made a concerted effort to get rid of it when he went to Dallas and to coach more to the flow of the game, which the players appreciated.

I thought it was funny that Denari chimed in that when Rick was here he always wore the same colored shirt/suit combo and now he mixes it up with his style/colors.

Lou Bega
06-14-2011, 10:18 AM
J Tinsley or a veteran savy Jason Kidd as your PG. Kidd deserved free reign, Tinsley did not. Tinsley was a quality PG in this league but he relied on 1 on 1 basketball too much.

I don't understand why Kravitz has to take a shot @ Rooney. Several teams were interested in him & he didn't pan out. He did make the the Rookie/Soph Challenge game!!! He got injured and fell out of the rotation.

Nobody blames the Simons. Compare Mark Cuban to them.

naptownmenace
06-14-2011, 10:19 AM
What's interesting about Carlisle is that it wasn't just the Pacers that gave him a raw deal. I thought he was treated much worse in Detroit when he was fired so that they could sign Larry Brown as coach (which in retrospect worked out okay for 3 seasons).

I didn't think firing Carlisle was the right thing to do at the time. I still think that it would've been better to rebuild the team starting with trading Tinsley while he still had some value and keep Rick as the coach. However, maybe Rick (like Reggie), wanted out of the Pacers locker room petty drama. If so, I don't blame him at all.

At any rate, I'm glad his coaching status has been validated because what he had to go through during the Brawl season was ridiculous and he coached his bahookie off to get that team to 46 wins and a 2-1 lead in the second round against the defending Champ Pistons team.

Kegboy
06-14-2011, 10:20 AM
I would agree that this was just a bad situation all around and Rick was better off elsewhere.

In retrospect, I think Rick did himself a disservice taking this job immediately after Detroit. He used to talk about how great his year doing TV in Seattle was for his development, and I think the time away after here helped him immensely as well. He was able to lighten up and not hold the reigns so tightly.

Of course, having JKidd running the point certainly helps in that regard.

Reginald
06-14-2011, 10:21 AM
Good Lord Kravitz, don't break your arm patting yourself on the back. This isn't something you knew that everyone couldn't see, and you're some sort of genius for it. Silly.

Everyone? As a season ticket holder from 1987 through the 2008 season, I can tell you emphatically that the general consensus in Conseco was Carlisle needed to be fired. To suggest otherwise isn't just revisionist history, it's stating the exact opposite of the truth.

Since86
06-14-2011, 10:35 AM
Okay so does Bob just ignore the fact that we were last in scoring his final year? I mean he mentions it but he basically just ignores it. I like RC, but it was clear this group of players back then did not match the coach. That's a failure of management for sure, and Management took the appropriate step to try and correct that by bringing in a new coach. To which they failed again by hiring JOB.

I'm sure the year off gave RC a good chance to reflect on his mistakes here in Indiana. Although, Honestly I'm not convinced that RC has much to do with Dallas's beautiful offense. I mean he has the purest PG in the league. It would be stupid for RC to try and micro-manage Kidd.


You missed the entire point. The point is that you don't throw the baby out with the bath water.

Which players didn't he match? JO? Tinsley? Ron? Al? etc. The exact same players they shipped out, and got new players with.

Look at the roster overhaul after Rick was let go. The whole roster, outside of Danny and Jeff, changed. Did Rick not fit Danny or Jeff?

Bob misses a huge point IMHO. I think Rick wanted the hell out of here, and Larry made that happen for his good friend. TPTB actually promoted Rick, giving him more control over the team (and more money), and then let him go the very next year.

I think it was a mutual decision for both sides to part ways.

naptownmenace
06-14-2011, 10:36 AM
Everyone? As a season ticket holder from 1987 through the 2008 season, I can tell you emphatically that the general consensus in Conseco was Carlisle needed to be fired. To suggest otherwise isn't just revisionist history, it's stating the exact opposite of the truth.
There were several of us that didn't want to see Rick go but I agree that it seemed that the majority thought it was a good idea to part ways.

I guess now it's just one of many things that didn't go exactly the Pacers way since 2005.

Unclebuck
06-14-2011, 10:48 AM
I think that is one of Bob's worst columns to date

Pacerized
06-14-2011, 10:48 AM
Given the choice to have Rick as our coach for this team I'd be all over it.
Our situation when Rick was fired was different. We seemingly had too much talent to give up on at the time and a change needed to be made. Hindsight is 20/20 so sure I'd rather have dumped the team and stuck it out with Rick, but we would've still sucked for the past 4 years. It's not that hard to be happy for Rick and support the Pacers.
Kravitz can't pass up an opportunity to blast the front office and the team.

imawhat
06-14-2011, 10:49 AM
Revisionist history, and it gets old reading it and frustrating that a person in Kravitz' position would be responsible for creating it.

Carlisle is one of my favorite coaches, but I have never seen players quit on a coach like our team did Carlisle in his last season. For some reason, Carlisle supporters seem to forget the '06-'07 season.

He wore out his welcome and he had to go. He was a terrible fit with our group of low IQ players. Rick needed a group of super intelligent players to understand his offensive schemes, which is exactly what he got with Dallas.

PR07
06-14-2011, 11:11 AM
Isn't it amazing how much better a coach Carlisle became when his front office brought in free agents like Tyson Chandler instead of Sarunas Jasikevicius?


Stupid things like this make me mad too. Tyson Chandler was never a free agent, as he was acquired in a trade from the Bobcats.

McKeyFan
06-14-2011, 11:13 AM
Because of all the junk and circumstances, letting Rick go wasn't the worst decision in the world.

But replacing him with JOB was.

Since86
06-14-2011, 11:14 AM
Revisionist history, and it gets old reading it and frustrating that a person in Kravitz' position would be responsible for creating it.

Couldn't agree more.


Carlisle is one of my favorite coaches, but I have never seen players quit on a coach like our team did Carlisle in his last season. For some reason, Carlisle supporters seem to forget the '06-'07 season.

Wait, I thought we were tired of revisionist history?

So you're saying that Rick needed to go because he lost the players, but yet you're ignoring the fact how the players he lost were shown the door also.

imawhat
06-14-2011, 11:22 AM
So you're saying that Rick needed to go because he lost the players, but yet you're ignoring the fact how the players he lost were shown the door also.

I'm not ignoring. I think it's unfortunate in retrospect that we jettisoned players in 2008-9 that were the root of the problem, but that's two seasons later.

It's a lot easier to remove one coach than it is thirteen players when there's a bad fit. As much as I like him, it'd never been more obvious (before O'Brien) that a coach had to go. And it's possible that Carlisle wanted out as well. I didn't get that impression, but it's possible.

Since86
06-14-2011, 11:30 AM
So you throw away a coach because he lost players that you're trying/going to throw away also?

That makes sense to you? Because it doesn't make sense to me.

Sure, it's easier. Doesn't mean it's the correct choice to make, especially when you're getting rid of the players anyways.

EDIT: And so we can put this whole stupid idea that Bob doesn't know how to use the internet, or a computer, so there isn't any possible way he could cherrypick from here on his columns.

His twitter name is @bkravitz and it's most definitely him, and not some PR person from the Star.

imawhat
06-14-2011, 11:36 AM
I don't think our intent was to get rid of those players.

It was probably understood that we'd get pennies on the dollar for Jermaine and Tinsley, and there was nothing we could do with our other untradebale pieces so the best solution was to try and make it work with O'Brien. Only then did it become obvious that it wouldn't work and we got put in a tough situation of trying to trade those guys.

Shade
06-14-2011, 11:40 AM
I am always disinclined to say "I told you so" -- it's self-aggrandizing and petty -- but in this case, I'm going to say it: I told you so.

Are you kidding me? You never miss an opportunity to toot your own horn, whether deserved or not.

GTFO with that crap, Bob.

Since86
06-14-2011, 11:46 AM
I don't think our intent was to get rid of those players.

Really?

I think everyone knew JO/Tinsley/Ron/SJax/Al were all on their way out one way or another.

I argued this point when Rick was let go, and obviously it happened. I used the phrase "don't throw the baby out with the bath water" many times, if my memory serves me correctly.

Shade
06-14-2011, 12:11 PM
I'm not ignoring. I think it's unfortunate in retrospect that we jettisoned players in 2008-9 that were the root of the problem, but that's two seasons later.

It's a lot easier to remove one coach than it is thirteen players when there's a bad fit. As much as I like him, it'd never been more obvious (before O'Brien) that a coach had to go. And it's possible that Carlisle wanted out as well. I didn't get that impression, but it's possible.

Most of those players were virtually untradeable, as well. Just look at what we ended up getting for them.

Since86
06-14-2011, 12:30 PM
Most of those players were virtually untradeable, as well. Just look at what we ended up getting for them.

Untradeable, yet they were traded. How weird.

D-BONE
06-14-2011, 12:40 PM
[/I]Are you kidding me? You never miss an opportunity to toot your own horn, whether deserved or not.

GTFO with that crap, Bob.

This is what most made me laugh. I'm almost certain he used the same I don't like to say I told you so line fairly recently...although I'm too lazy to check.

Brad8888
06-14-2011, 12:41 PM
I remember thinking that, while it was completely understandable that Rick was no longer going to coach here, I was surprised that he wasn't going to join Bird in the front office as GM. That, in turn, made me think that Rick just wanted out of the entire situation due to his realization of how hopeless everything was at that point in time and his recognition that there was very little that could be done to change that any time soon.

I was very upset that the ending was Rick leaving the franchise, and I believed at that time that he was virtually the only aspect of the franchise that was actually a positive at the time he left. But, I also believed that the players had talent, and that with a couple of changes and a new coach that things would get better.

WRONG!

Now that we finally have a new coach as opposed to the "Difference Maker", I am hopeful once again, and I hope Vogel is given the chance to continue to grow and develop as a head coach (as it now appears he will) whenever things get settled with the CBA.

Unclebuck
06-14-2011, 12:41 PM
it almost seems like Bob's editor called Bob last at 11:30 and said quick we need a column on the NBA finals - doesn't matter the topic, we need soemthing and you have 30 minutes to whip it together

xBulletproof
06-14-2011, 12:52 PM
Untradeable, yet they were traded. How weird.

You completely ignored the word 'virtually' right before it.

Since86
06-14-2011, 12:58 PM
You completely ignored the word 'virtually' right before it.

No I didn't. It's like saying something is virtually impossible, right after it happened. Obviously it's not that "impossible" if it happened.

Virtually untradeable means that they're tradeable, and it definitely meant they're tradeable, considering the fact that they were traded.




I didn't think I was going to have to, but I might just have to dig up all the old threads. We knew that TPTB were going to ship most everyone out, it was only a matter of finding out which select few were going to stay.

PR07
06-14-2011, 01:45 PM
I don't think anyone can logically dispute that Rick is a very good coach in this league. If he weren't under contract right now, I'd definitely want the Pacers to go after him. However, for where our roster was where he left and where it was headed, does anyone think Rick would've been a good coach for a rebuilding team? This is a guy that has always leaned heavily on veteran players.

Now that we are finally seeing a significant amount of light from the darkness of the rebuilding tunnel, it seems like he'd be a much better fit at the present time.

Pacer Fan
06-14-2011, 01:50 PM
1st and foremost, I am very happy for Carilse and that veteran team finally getting over the hump.

All I know is before the brawl happened, the Pacers had been one of the most successful teams in years. Management and Carlisle had no control of what happened in Detroit. Management and Carlisle had no control on what other players did or didn't do on or off the court in the coming tenure of Carlisle and JOB. If the brawl hadn't happened and JO's cronic knee problems didn't happen then the Pacers may have won a championship...Carlisle may still be here along with Ron and others. Reggie prolly would have played for another year or 2.

Instead we have a total breakdown of multiple players with big contracts that was doing things that nobody could control but themselves.

The Management tried to do what was good for the orginization and what the fans and local media wanted at the time and that was to weed out all the bad apples. In order to do that the Pacers got hurt on Value trades, which some fans just don't understand and prolly never will.

The upcoming trades where better then one can ask for in the real world of BB. Yet, Management and coaches gets blamed for players short comings. Knees blown out, bulging disks and common injuries causing a further downfall. Lack of game hustle, lack of defense, lack of effort, ect. Just a ride downhill. Pacers was in Salary Cap Hell ever since the brawl and they couldn't move these disfunctional contracts...who want's them. All I can say is the Pacers did have a more respectible team after trading off the troublemakers win or lose.

For my understanding Carlisle and Bird are very close to one another. Knowing the road that the Pacers was entering from management stand point, it was a blessing for Carlisle to leave before his career could have been destroyed like JOB's has been.

Now, The Pacers are turning over a new leaf!

And Kravitz....wow, I have alot of words for you, but I must refrain myself.

IndySDExport
06-14-2011, 02:17 PM
"I am always disinclined to say "I told you so" -- it's self-aggrandizing and petty -- but in this case, I'm going to say it: I told you so."

Bob Kravitz has never been disinclined to say "I told you so."

In fact, from what I've read, he does it at every opportunity he can. Even when it's something as blatantly obvious as Rick Carlisle being one of the best coaches in the NBA.

I congratulate Rick.

I boo Bob Kravitz.

Trophy
06-14-2011, 02:50 PM
I actually give Rick a great deal of credit during his time here.

It wasn't easy coaching this team during his tenure.

He had to work with a bunch of immature, bad guys and the fact that he had to try and break up the brawl and said he "fought for his life" is just terrible for a coach like him who knows how to coach a team into the right direction given a group of willing players.

For our sake, thank God that's a distant memory.

Glad Rick went to a team like Dallas. I couldn't be anymore happier for him to win a championship with that group of guys.

Sandman21
06-14-2011, 03:12 PM
Because of all the junk and circumstances, letting Rick go wasn't the worst decision in the world.

But replacing him with JOB was.

Replacing Rick with JOB wasn't the worst decision in the world. That goes to EXTENDING JOB.:laugh:


Untradeable, yet they were traded. How weird.

Look at what we wound up getting for them. Not even CLOSE to equal value.

Since86
06-14-2011, 03:38 PM
Look at what we wound up getting for them. Not even CLOSE to equal value.

I didn't say that TPTB got equal value. I said they were traded.

The original discussion was the idea that Rick lost the players he was coaching. But my point was that the players that Rick lost were the same exact players that got shipped out, every single one of them but Danny and Jeff.

If the reasoning behind getting rid of Rick is because he lost the team, and then you completely make-over the roster, why in the world would you get rid of the coach that lost them?

Shade
06-14-2011, 04:45 PM
Would you prefer "virtually untradeable for anyone who isn't a significant downgrade?"

That's too much to type out. :-p


No I didn't. It's like saying something is virtually impossible, right after it happened. Obviously it's not that "impossible" if it happened.

Virtually untradeable means that they're tradeable, and it definitely meant they're tradeable, considering the fact that they were traded.




I didn't think I was going to have to, but I might just have to dig up all the old threads. We knew that TPTB were going to ship most everyone out, it was only a matter of finding out which select few were going to stay.

Shade
06-14-2011, 04:46 PM
it almost seems like Bob's editor called Bob last at 11:30 and said quick we need a column on the NBA finals - doesn't matter the topic, we need soemthing and you have 30 minutes to whip it together

Which likely just led to Bob just taking one of the dozens of other extremely similar articles he wrote before and changing a few words here and there.

Viola. Crap redux.

Since86
06-14-2011, 04:49 PM
Not really. I think the more accurate phrase would be "virtually untradeable for anyone who has enough heart to play in the playoffs."

Love the fact that Dirk and Co. got a ring, but I hate the fact that Peja did.

Eleazar
06-14-2011, 04:52 PM
I've always been a Carlisle supporter, even when he was fired I still considered him one of the best coaches in the league. Even with that firing him was the right decision for everyone involved. Just because a coach is a good coach does not mean they are the right coach for your team and situation.

Doug
06-14-2011, 05:41 PM
When Rick was fired, it was time for him to go. A change needed to be made and that almost always starts with the coach in the NBA. Many a good coach has been fired because his players were not good enough.

That remainder of the season after the brawl was pretty special. One hell of an effort from the coaching staff and the players.

I'm happy for Rick. He deserves success after what he went through here.