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Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

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  • Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

    Indystar.com
    Bob Kravitz
    http://www.indystar.com/article/2009.../1034/SPORTS15

    For sure now, forget the playoffs

    Larry Bird did a very smart thing during the period leading up to Thursday's 3 p.m. NBA trading deadline.
    He did nothing.


    Well, not really nothing. He did make phone calls, did accept them, did talk various deals with other NBA teams. But when it came time to pull the trigger, the Indiana Pacers president stood pat, and for that, Pacers fans -- at least those who are capable of thinking beyond next week -- should be suitably satisfied.
    Too often in recent years, the Pacers have been forced to make bad deals under distress. They had to trade Ron Artest and walked away with a Peja Stojakovic rental. They had to trade Stephen Jackson and ended up with two solid but overpaid and untradeable players, Mike Dunleavy and Troy Murphy.
    Right now, the only trades out there for the Pacers are bad trades. Deals that bring in further drains on the salary cap. Deals that force them to part with cap-relievers like Rasho Nesterovic and Marquis Daniels, two guys with expiring contracts. Virtually all of the deals out there could be summed up this way:
    Our junk for their junk.
    What's the point?
    "We weren't willing to take on long-term deals with players who weren't going to be part of our core group," general manager David Morway said. ". . . We weren't going to do anything to reduce our cap flexibility, which was something we worked really hard to get and wanted to retain. If we could have added a draft pick, we would have, but teams are holding on to them for now."
    There were only three good reasons to make a deal:
    To rid the franchise of Jamaal Tinsley, the multi-million-dollar albatross.
    To add to the team's cap flexibility down the road.
    To bring in an additional draft pick.
    On all three fronts, good luck.
    Nobody is dumb and desperate enough to trade for Tinsley. Every point guard in the NBA could come down with peanut-butter-induced salmonella, and still, nobody would make the move to bring in the Tin Man.
    And with the NBA looking at a lower salary-cap and luxury-tax threshold in coming seasons, the two most valuable commodities are added cap flexibility and draft choices.
    There was no reason for the Pacers to panic and make a deal they would later regret. The record isn't what they hoped it would be, but on a lot of fronts, this season has been a relative success. They dumped Jermaine O'Neal's contract, brought seven new players into the system, established an entertaining offensive style of play and . . . no gun play or appearances on the police blotter.
    Standing pat is a difficult, counterintuitive thing for Bird, who breathes to win and has just one year left on his deal. It would have been tempting to make a deal that would have brought in a player like, say, Tyson Chandler, the defense-minded New Orleans center who might have given the Pacers a boost in the effort to earn a playoff spot.
    But what sense would that have made, short term or long term? Especially now with word that Danny Granger is going to be out of the lineup for 10 days to three weeks with a foot injury, and talk that Mike Dunleavy might not return this season?
    News flash: They're not going to make the playoffs. They weren't going to make the playoffs even before the Granger injury. The Eastern Conference is fool's gold that dupes lousy teams into thinking they can sneak into that eighth spot. They should have forgotten about the postseason a long time ago. Keep playing Roy Hibbert, who has developed into a possible core player. Play Brandon Rush, a disappointing basket case whose only chance of emerging from his shell is by getting minutes.
    Forget the fact that nobody was offering anything worthwhile to the Pacers. Ask yourself this: Who do the Pacers have who might be worthwhile to another team? And would the Pacers be willing to part with that player?
    Granger is untouchable, unless Cleveland calls and offers LeBron James.
    I wouldn't move Hibbert, who has a chance to be a solid center for years to come. I wouldn't move Rush, who's too young to be dismissed as a bust. I wouldn't move Nesterovic or Daniels, whose expiring contracts will free up roughly $15 million. The Pacers blundered by moving Austin Croshere for Daniels just when Croshere's expiring deal made him the most valuable.
    Now, one guy who is valuable to other teams and a guy I would move is Jeff Foster, and it boggles the mind to comprehend why the Pacers appear to be so keen on keeping him. Great guy, solid citizen and he plays hard, but he's a rotation player and he's starting to break down.
    In the end, it was a quiet day for the Pacers, just as it was for most of the league. That was a good thing for Indiana. A smart thing. A patient thing. This isn't about this year. It's about next year, and the years after that.

    -------------

    I seriously don't understand why he called Brandon Rush a "basket case". The kid hasn't done a damn thing to deserve something like that, or maybe I'm just reading it the wrong way.

    "I've got an idea--an idea so smart that my head would explode if I even began to know what I'm talking about." - Peter Griffin


  • #2
    Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

    Originally posted by DanGrangerPwrRanger View Post

    I seriously don't understand why he called Brandon Rush a "basket case". The kid hasn't done a damn thing to deserve something like that, or maybe I'm just reading it the wrong way.
    I think you're taking it the wrong way... at least if you are taking it to mean "nut job" or something similar. I took it to mean Rush has lost his confidence and direction. That he's got butterflies... is a bundle of nerves... isn't sure of himself or his game any longer....etc..
    Nuntius was right for a while. I was wrong for a while. But ultimately I was right and Frank Vogel has been let go.

    ------

    "A player who makes a team great is more valuable than a great player. Losing yourself in the group, for the good of the group, that’s teamwork."

    -John Wooden

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    • #3
      Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

      I wonder how much Mike Wells had to spoon feed him to be able to write this column? I think it is pretty well known that Kravitz has a pretty poor working knowledge of the NBA.
      ...Still "flying casual"
      @roaminggnome74

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

        Yet I can't help, but agree with almost all of it.
        2012 PD ABA Fantasy Keeper League Champion, sports.ws

        2011 PD ABA Fantasy Keeper League Champion, sports.ws

        2006 PD ABA Fantasy League runner up, sports.ws

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

          Originally posted by Roaming Gnome View Post
          I wonder how much Mike Wells had to spoon feed him to be able to write this column? I think it is pretty well known that Kravitz has a pretty poor working knowledge of the NBA.
          Mike Wells spoon-feeding him is one possibility, but the other is that Kravitz gets his info and some of his opinions from reading message boards like this. There's been a few times over the years when his comments sound eerily like those of members of this board (or the Star's board).

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

            Originally posted by lafayettepacer View Post
            Mike Wells spoon-feeding him is one possibility, but the other is that Kravitz gets his info and some of his opinions from reading message boards like this. There's been a few times over the years when his comments sound eerily like those of members of this board (or the Star's board).

            You know what funny....He gets paid.... No really I saw an AP guy on PD during a game once.

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            • #7
              Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

              Mr. Obvious strikes again.
              Come to the Dark Side -- There's cookies!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                Originally posted by Bball View Post
                I think you're taking it the wrong way... at least if you are taking it to mean "nut job" or something similar. I took it to mean Rush has lost his confidence and direction. That he's got butterflies... is a bundle of nerves... isn't sure of himself or his game any longer....etc..
                I agree. And I think Kravitz is putting some of the onus on JOB.
                "Look, it's up to me to put a team around ... Lance right now." —Kevin Pritchard press conference

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                • #9
                  Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                  I am very frightened that I actually agree with almost everything here.

                  I disagree that any of the Foster deals were lost opportunities because, as far as I can tell, we got nothing "core" from them and Foster is the last player we should trade simply because we could. I understand that many see Foster as a nutritious part of a good breakfast who is bad for you if he is the whole meal, but I think his destiny is to be the bench vet for the Pacers who helps keep the locker room stable and shows an example of a work ethic.
                  BillS

                  A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.
                  Or throw in a first-round pick and flip it for a max-level point guard...

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                    They could save money by simply paying for articles from freelancers from the public, and instructing them what tone / agenda they are trying to push. They would get better talent as well.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                      Originally posted by McKeyFan View Post
                      I agree. And I think Kravitz is putting some of the onus on JOB.
                      If JOB is going to get some of the blame for Rush's problems, then JOB deserves a lot of the credit for Hibberts recent play (I think he's really improved from earlier in the season)

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                        Playing time matters. Without consistently getting it, either no development or backsliding is likely to occur due to a lack of confidence and the struggle of adjusting to teammates tendencies while trying to execute within a system that the player is not familiar with is difficult to overcome, especially after coming from spending four years at a fundamentally sound basketball school, as both Hibbert and Rush did. Hibbert is being trusted more and is responding somewhat to that, and now we should be giving Rush a chance as well, regardless of how many mistakes he makes for a while. We should also encourage him to shoot more so that his confidence on offense that he had at Kansas is re-established. Will this occur? Time will tell.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                          Originally posted by Brad8888 View Post
                          Playing time matters. Without consistently getting it, either no development or backsliding is likely to occur due to a lack of confidence and the struggle of adjusting to teammates tendencies while trying to execute within a system that the player is not familiar with is difficult to overcome, especially after coming from spending four years at a fundamentally sound basketball school, as both Hibbert and Rush did. Hibbert is being trusted more and is responding somewhat to that, and now we should be giving Rush a chance as well, regardless of how many mistakes he makes for a while. We should also encourage him to shoot more so that his confidence on offense that he had at Kansas is re-established. Will this occur? Time will tell.
                          Of course, Rush got extensive playing time early in the season and has been shown more trust by JOB than Hibbert in many ways, not the least of which being the fact that O'Brien has left him on the floor with key assignments during crunch time of several games. I can't recall once Hibbert being on the floor at the end of a close game.

                          I actually think O'Brien has done a much better job with Rush than he has with Hibbert. However, Hibbert is actually responding better than Rush is. Rush has struggled with success this year, mysteriously disappearing just after it appeared he had finally put it together. (Seth will likely come along and disagree with this, but, while it is a criticism of Rush, it is not an indictment. I like Rush as a player a lot, and I still expect him to become a productive member of this franchise's future.)

                          Now, all that being said, I absolutely believe it's time, now and for the rest of the season, to basically give both all the minutes they can handle. Rush is a "basket case" in that he overthinks the game to much. He's like a golfer with the case of the yips. He doesn't have faith in his core shooting/game, so he keeps making adjustments in what he's doing, trying to find the sweet spot. Then, when it starts working, it's never long lasting because it's based on some cobbled together adjustments of turning his left foot out, opening his stance, and shortening up his backswing. In effect, his shot isn't working because he's not developing consistently good form, rather he's band-aiding and adjusting to an approach that's not sustainable.

                          That's actually the reason I still have a lot of faith in Rush. His problems are eminently correctable.

                          Anyway, I generally agree with this article, and I would consider the misuse of Rush and Hibbert for the balance of this season to be a firable offense by O'Brien.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                            I would love to see Rush out there doing well. However, watching him play offense, I'm often thinking "what was that?". I worry that Rush just doesn't have offensive talent to really contribute. With Hibbert its different. I can see the potential and see the talent. He makes mistakes, but those can be fixed.

                            Rush really needs to work with that new shot coach. With that athleticism, he might combine an adequate jumper with power to the rim and contribute.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Kravitz Says.... No Playoffs

                              Originally posted by Unclebuck View Post
                              If JOB is going to get some of the blame for Rush's problems, then JOB deserves a lot of the credit for Hibberts recent play (I think he's really improved from earlier in the season)
                              UB. I was talking to one of my buddies yesterday and told him I feel Hibbert has improved his game more than anybody on our entire roster this season. I remember his first game @ the Coliseum that ended in ejection and they I watch him play against Philly on Tuesday and was impressed.

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