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Thread: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

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    Default Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    So I decided to go to this. I was very down last night, but when I woke up this morning I was feeling more "Pacers Positive" and after going I can say I'm very glad I did.

    Now before I get to the nitty gritty let me ask this, please do not take anything to social media. Pritchard asked us all to be off twitter as he spoke. At the same time do not expect anything like "Pacers are going to trade PG to X or Y for A & B"

    OK let's get started I'll break it up into the different topics that KP covered. It started with Denari giving him questions/prompts and then we had a few basic audience questions.

    Paul George: As Denari put it, Paul is the elephant in the room. KP started out by making clear that PG has done a tremendous amount for the franchise and the community and that he believes Paul does truly love Indiana.

    KP says he and Paul sat together 5-6 times this summer since KP was president. In every meeting, Paul's message was the same, I want to be a Pacer and I want to win as a Pacer. KP and Paul had outlined many different free agent and draft plans to create a better roster for the Pacers and for Paul.

    Paul's agent came to the Pacers last Friday and requested that Paul be moved, and as KP put it "That there was one team in particular Paul had in mind, and I don't know if I'll ever say that team's name again." I want to be clear about something KP was not joking about this and you could tell. There is real ire in KP for whatever role the Lakers played in this real or perceived. The Lakers came up a couple more times as KP was speaking and each time KP did not say their name.

    Regarding trades for PG, KP said they received many offers, but as of last night he did not have a deal he felt comfortable with taking for the Pacers. He believes that he will see another set of better offers on July 1 or sometime in FA would be the vibe I got from his answers.

    PG has not spoken to KP. But KP did say if what is best for the Pacers is that PG is a Pacer come opening night, then that is what will happen. IMO this is BS, and just being used as a sword over PG's head because I think KP is very aware of how the fans feel about PG right now, and IMO the only way PG could ever set foot on the court as a Pacer again is if he extended his contract between now and October, again that's JMO.

    My general vibe from KP is that he's not mad at PG so much as he's really disappointed, almost like a parent to a child, don't know how else to explain it. He repeated several times that he doesn't know what changed PG's mind between their last meeting together and PG's agent coming to the Pacers last Friday, but that "Something had to have happened" but that he does not know what that could have been (though my read is that he firmly believes it was something LA did, JMO based on the answers and body language).

    KP believes he will get a good package for PG and one that works well for the franchise both current and future. So ultimately I do not expect PG to be a Pacer by opening night, I think that is worst case scenario for all parties involved, including PG and I think KP knows that also.

    TJ Leaf: Pritchard loves the kid. He believes that Leaf is a great player and a great person and in Pritch's opinion one of the hardest workers if not hardest worker in the draft. Says Leaf is currently working out 3 times a day. Does not know Leaf's ceiling, but believes he's going to be a very good player for us. He said Leaf stunned him in pre-draft workout/interview by being able to list off most of the great Pacers of all time from ABA all the way to NBA and including guys that the average fan might not know. Leaf was ranked in the Pacers top 10 of this draft for the entire year and was there in what Pritchard calls our "Final List" which is a final ranking of players for the draft based on their talent and their fit with the Pacers. Pritch said UCLA was one of their most scouted teams this season, Pacers probably took in 30 or 35 UCLA games.

    Ike Anigbogu: Pritchard says this is the best value pick he's gotten in 20 years in basketball management. The Pacers were completely shocked when they were able to select him at 47 and Pritchard said there were several shocking first round picks that allowed this to happen, particularly he said one in the first 21 picks of the draft. Anigbogu was ranked in the top 18 for the Pacers on the "Final List". Pritchard says Anigbogu has an incredible physical presence and he believes he will be a strong, physical interior shot blocker. He thinks Anigbogu is probably 2-3 years away, but that he believes he could potentially come along a little bit faster than that and he thinks the contrast between his game and Myles will allow Anigbogu to learn quicker. I will touch on his physical status here in a moment as KP spent some decent time just praising the Pacers training staff.

    Edmond Sumner: Pritchard is high on Sumner too and that Pacers were allowed to buy back into the draft to get him. He didn't say where Somner ended up on the Pacers draft board, but in Pritch's opinion he feels Sumner would have gone in the top 15-20 to someone had he been healthy. He thinks that Sumner has the potential to get healthy and immediately pay dividends for the Pacers.

    Pacers training staff: Pritch talked about this mainly because of the concerns of the past 2 guys. KP thinks we have the best training staff in the NBA and that they signed off on their ability to have Sumner and Ike healthy and ready to go for the Pacers. KP says the Pacers won't draft any guy that the training staff will not sign off on

    Lance Stephenson: Hmmm, I think KP is trying to figure Lance out, but he also likes Lance's "fire in the belly". He said he has sat with Lance 3-4 times since becoming President and he said Lance is working extremely hard. Lance has lost 12 pounds and is asking for "the reigns to the team" (LOL, BORN READY BABY). He laughed after that, but it's clear he values Lance and what he brings emotionally. He said after Lance came back that he tried to sit down with his scouts and figure out if they could start to account for how much "fire in the belly" a player has.

    He said Lance recognizes he never should have left Indiana and loves it here. KP says Lance has talked about how he wants to prove everyone wrong but specifically the teams he went to and never had success with. He said Lance is much more motivated than he was. He also said Lance is a little bit crazy, but as KP said "I'm not sure a little bit crazy isn't a good thing.

    He acknowledged Lance's impact on the team by saying that while we had a a group of guys who wanted to win and get better and do things the right way that Lance took that to another level for us and was a spark that could not be easily quantified except by the product on the floor. KP seemed to insinuate what many of us felt, the Pacers were more fun for him once Lance was back.

    Myles Turner:
    KP did not speak directly about Myles but he did have an interesting story to tell. Someone asked a question about evaluating college players based on how well they perform throughout their season vs how well they perform in their workout with you. KP said he typically only will allow his scouts to move someone 3-4 spots one way or the other based on workouts. He said if someone takes a big jump (10 or more spots) he's pretty skeptical about it, but Myles was one of those guys. Myles came into his workout with the Pacers 16-17 on the Pacers board, KP couldn't remember exactly, but that Myles worked out against a guy ranked much higher and in KP's words "He KILLED him." So the Pacers re-evaluated Myles basically and tried to figure out why did this guy struggle in college? KP mentioned coaching, play usage, etc as things they began to look more closely at and that after that plus the workout Myles ended up ranking 6 or 7 on the Pacers "Final List" for that draft.

    Lonzo Ball: This question was out of left field (from the audience) but basically it came because KP talked a lot about the culture of the Pacers and how they want to find guys they are sure will work in the Pacers franchise and how the organization operates which KP basically said is supposed to be a big family and that everyone needs to rely on each other. Long story short the question was "Would the Pacers have drafted Lonzo Ball?" KP's answer was that the Pacers had evaluated the top of the draft a while back in case they did end up there for some reason and that the Pacers decided they would not draft Lonzo Ball. KP said it was harder than he wanted to be on the kid, but then basically hinted the Pacers would never have had a personality like Lavar around the franchise and KP even said there was concern about how that would affect the rest of the roster.

    Jeff Teague: Question from the audience about Teague and renewing him. KP gave the same answer he's given about Teague all summer that there are scenarios where we would and scenarios where we won't. KP said Teague is very introverted and he thinks Teague will play better somewhere (Pacers or otherwise) as he gets more comfortable. He said he and Teague had not had more than a 2 minute convo since Teague joined the Pacers until March of this year during the NCAA tournament. KP said Teague is a basketball junkie (what up Hoosier roots) and that he and Teague began to bond over watching guys in the NCAA tourney and that Teague would give his opinions on prospects to KP. KP said no one on the Pacers probably watches more bball than Teague who will watch the most random games he can find. He said Teague is a really good guy and that either way he has been good for the franchise.

    Pacers Culture/Draft working/Larry Bird: KP talked briefly about the Pacers culture and how they work to have all players want to be here and to build a place players feel comfortable with everyone. He said the design of the new St. V's facility was done with the players specifically in mind and that he's excited for it to be finished so players have even more space to work out, practice, relax, etc. He believes it will be the best facility of it's type in the NBA when it opens.

    He then talked about the draft a bit and how there are 100s of trade calls and he called that flirting, but very little "dating" (or completing a deal). He did say that talking trades is his favorite part of being an NBA decision maker, favorite part of the job. He then got into he and Larry and talked about how it was weird for him this year to have the tables turned. He said for the past 6 years Larry would always come to him right before our pick and say "Who do YOU think we should take?" and KP would give his answer. KP seemed to be set on Leaf but he said that he did the same thing to Larry this year since their roles were reversed (read: I think Larry has essentially taken KP's job and KP has taken his), so KP asked Larry who he would draft and Larry said to him "Is Leaf still on the board? I think if he is and we pass on Leaf we'd be some dumb mother ****ers."

    Throughout this event I was thinking to myself how bizarre it would be to see Larry in this sort of setting.

    Finally Georges Niang came up and answered some questions. First let me say, Georges has also lost weight, I can't say for sure how much but I'd guess 15ish pounds. He looks way more in shape. Niang touched on being in the best shape of his life and he said one of the things you learn in the NBA is that there is "college shape" and "NBA shape" and that if you don't get in NBA shape you're screwed because these guys have "grown men strength". Niang said that the Pacers were actually a very close group this past year. That on the road they would do a lot together and that the vets were the ones on the team who made sure the team was together on the road. Niang told some funny stories about his rookies duties including picking up food for flights before practice or trying to get carry out from Kilroy's 15 minutes before he needed to get to the airport for some guys on the team (Al Jefferson had a salad). Georges is very well spoken and a smart kid it seems, he's excited for summer league he said and he admitted that he played nervous many times his rookie year, said he would watch himself on TV afterwards and think "What the heck was I doing out there?"

    Overall it was a fantastic event. KP is extremely well spoken and knows bball. I am confident in his leadership and he made no bones about it, he's the lead decision maker now and the buck stops with him.
    Last edited by Trader Joe; 06-23-2017 at 03:03 PM.



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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    BTW it was Frank Kaminsky who Turner dominated in that pre-draft workout.

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    please do not take anything to social media

    Um, what do you think this is?


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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by Peck View Post
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    please do not take anything to social media

    Um, what do you think this is?
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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by Peck View Post
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    please do not take anything to social media

    Um, what do you think this is?
    A room full of friends!!!
    You know how hippos are made out to be sweet and silly, like big cows, but are actually extremely dangerous and can kill you with stunning brutality? The Pacers are the NBA's hippos....Matt Moore CBS Sports....

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Great attention to detail. I don't really have anything to contribute but I appreciate you taking the time to put this together.

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by Trader Joe View Post
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    My general vibe from KP is that he's not mad at PG so much as he's really disappointed, almost like a parent to a child, don't know how else to explain it. He repeated several times that he doesn't know what changed PG's mind between their last meeting together and PG's agent coming to the Pacers last Friday, but that "Something had to have happened" but that he does not know what that could have been (though my read is that he firmly believes it was something LA did, JMO based on the answers and body language).
    I hope he's working with the league office behind the scenes looking into the possibility of tampering, because my gut feeling is something is up. If he seriously won't say their name, then I think he smells a rat too.
    "Nobody wants to play against Tyler Hansbrough NO BODY!" ~ Frank Vogel

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    KP seems really high on Leaf, let's hope we works out.

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Great write up, thanks for posting this
    Danger Zone

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Excellent write up. I read every word. Thank you.

    I enjoy listening to KP. He certainly could go into TV or radio after his career is over

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Lol I wonder why Georges Niang of all people was there

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    I love that Pritchard said his "favorite" part of his responsibilities was trade calls


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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by Ace E.Anderson View Post
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    Lol I wonder why Georges Niang of all people was there
    Since he was the rook last year. He was giving insight into what it is like to be drafted and then adjust to the league.



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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by Sandman21 View Post
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    I hope he's working with the league office behind the scenes looking into the possibility of tampering, because my gut feeling is something is up. If he seriously won't say their name, then I think he smells a rat too.
    I don't think KP will do anything like that until the PG situation is resolved. At the same time I don't think he's overly motivated to help PG get to LA.



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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    One more note on Anigbogu, KP said the Pacers run COUNTLESS mock drafts, he didn't say exactly how many and maybe he doesn't know for sure, but he knows that in not a single one, not a single scenario they considered did they have Anigbogu even dropping out of the first round.



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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Awesome read, thank you for that. Like I've said multiple times, if Magic is an arrogant enough dick to blatantly tamper on national TV, then God only knows what happened behind the scenes.

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by Trader Joe View Post
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    Finally Georges Niang came up and answered some questions. First let me say, Georges has also lost weight, I can't say for sure how much but I'd guess 15ish pounds. He looks way more in shape. Niang touched on being in the best shape of his life and he said one of the things you learn in the NBA is that there is "college shape" and "NBA shape" and that if you don't get in NBA shape you're screwed because these guys have "grown men strength". Niang said that the Pacers were actually a very close group this past year. That on the road they would do a lot together and that the vets were the ones on the team who made sure the team was together on the road. Niang told some funny stories about his rookies duties including picking up food for flights before practice or trying to get carry out from Kilroy's 15 minutes before he needed to get to the airport for some guys on the team (Al Jefferson had a salad). Georges is very well spoken and a smart kid it seems, he's excited for summer league he said and he admitted that he played nervous many times his rookie year, said he would watch himself on TV afterwards and think "What the heck was I doing out there?"
    If hoops doesn't work out, Niang can replace Spicer maybe

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by Trader Joe View Post
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    Default Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    **** Paul George.

    **** the Lakers.

    **** Magic (we all know he tampered).

    **** Kobe (I'm sure he had a hand in this).

    **** LeBron (for breaking the NBA).

    **** Boston (just because).

    **** the NBA.

    I think that about covers it.


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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    If the Lakers are investigated for Tampering and found guilty, do they surrender picks to the Pacers for the foreseeable future?
    You can't get champagne from a garden hose.

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    I'm glad that we were going to pass on Lonzo. I guess that means it's Ingram or bust in regards to a deal with the Lakers (which is fine by me).


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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by graphic-er View Post
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    If the Lakers are investigated for Tampering and found guilty, do they surrender picks to the Pacers for the foreseeable future?
    Probably. But if they get Paul and LeBron, the picks will probably be some crappy late first-rounders.


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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Quote Originally Posted by BlueCollarColts View Post
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    KP seems really high on Leaf.
    So was Monta

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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Just me saying this, not KP, but I'll be kinda shocked if Paul george ends up a Laker this fall.



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    Default Re: Pacers post draft lunch w/ Kevin Pritchard & Georges Niang

    Wow, great post. Let me know if you're ever in the DMV, I'll buy you a beer for this one.

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