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Thread: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    I put the words the best in quotes, because if he isn't the best he is in the top 2 or 3.

    http://www.indystar.com/articles/8/025639-4458-116.html


    Question: Seven of the Pacers players, to the best of my knowledge, have never played for any other NBA team. Jonathan Bender, Austin Croshere, Jeff Foster, Al Harrington, Fred Jones, Reggie Miller and Jamaal Tinsley. That's over half of the Pacers' roster.

    I checked out a couple of other teams' rosters and none of them came close to matching the Pacers on this statistic. It seems the Pacers organization has a strong desire to develop their pool of talent and avoids trading off their players as much as possible.

    One would think that this probably helps create a better atmosphere amongst the players and management. Is this unusual in the NBA? (Bob from Indianapolis)


    Answer: These days it is. There's a constant drum beat for change, originating with fans as well as talk show and internet media types. Trade rumors have become a year-round thing. But stability usually wins.

    Chemistry obviously is important in basketball, and Donnie Walsh has shown the ability to ignore the cries for change and let it develop. People wanted him to trade Rik Smits early in his career. They wanted him to break up the Pacers after they lost to the Knicks in the 1999 playoffs. They wanted a lot of changes during Isiah Thomas' first two seasons as coach, but he held firm except for the trade with Chicago that brought the center they lacked. They wanted him to get rid of Ron Artest. I could go on.

    I look around the league and see teams with losing records that have as much or almost as much talent as the Pacers. But they lack a winning culture and chemistry. Most teams simply don't have the patience or strength to stand up to the pleas for change. Chicago, for example. It once had Brad Miller, Elton Brand and Ron Artest on its roster. What it didn't have was the foresight or patience to let them develop.

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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Damn straight. People give up on players and teams too easily, and it's good to have someone in charge who's got the patience to let things work. And what's better, he knows when it really is time to let someone go [The Davis boys, Jax, Rose & Best]
    Official Member of the Anti-Alliteration Association

  3. #3

    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Walsh is very good at what he does, but not great.

    When we win an NBA championship, I'll put Donnie at the top of the list. But not until.

  4. #4

    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Walsh is very good at what he does, but not great.

    When we win an NBA championship, I'll put Donnie at the top of the list. But not until.

    So by that rationale, Reggie, Karl Malone, Charles Barclay, Hank Aaron, etc. aren't/weren't great players because they never won championships.

  5. #5

    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Walsh is very good at what he does, but not great.

    When we win an NBA championship, I'll put Donnie at the top of the list. But not until.

    So by that rationale, Reggie, Karl Malone, Charles Barclay, Hank Aaron, etc. aren't/weren't great players because they never won championships.
    It is the job of players to play.

    It is the job of GM's to build teams.

    So, yes, if a GM doesn't have at least one championship under his belt in a long career, I hardly think he can be termed the best.

    He can still be in the Hall of Fame. But the best in the biz, he ain't.

  6. #6

    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    So, yes, if a GM doesn't have at least one championship under his belt in a long career, I hardly think he can be termed the best.

    He can still be in the Hall of Fame. But the best in the biz, he ain't.

    You said Walsh was very good, but not great. No one said anything about being "the best."

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Walsh is very good at what he does, but not great.

    When we win an NBA championship, I'll put Donnie at the top of the list. But not until.

    So by that rationale, Reggie, Karl Malone, Charles Barclay, Hank Aaron, etc. aren't/weren't great players because they never won championships.
    It is the job of players to play.

    It is the job of GM's to build teams.

    So, yes, if a GM doesn't have at least one championship under his belt in a long career, I hardly think he can be termed the best.

    He can still be in the Hall of Fame. But the best in the biz, he ain't.
    Walshi is one of the top 3 GMs in the NBA, if not the best. To say otherwise is complete ignorance.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Walsh is very good at what he does, but not great.

    When we win an NBA championship, I'll put Donnie at the top of the list. But not until.

    So by that rationale, Reggie, Karl Malone, Charles Barclay, Hank Aaron, etc. aren't/weren't great players because they never won championships.
    It is the job of players to play.

    It is the job of GM's to build teams.

    So, yes, if a GM doesn't have at least one championship under his belt in a long career, I hardly think he can be termed the best.

    He can still be in the Hall of Fame. But the best in the biz, he ain't.
    Walshi is one of the top 3 GMs in the NBA, if not the best. To say otherwise is complete ignorance.
    Donnie's good but he's not perfect.

    No championships in the East among the GM's, so he ranks at the top with me there.

    But, if you want me to say he's better than West in the West, forget about it until the Pacers wear rings.

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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    So, yes, if a GM doesn't have at least one championship under his belt in a long career, I hardly think he can be termed the best.

    He can still be in the Hall of Fame. But the best in the biz, he ain't.
    You said Walsh was very good, but not great. No one said anything about being "the best."
    Ah, but this thread is titled,

    Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best".

    And UB expanded this in his very first sentence...

    I put the words the best in quotes, because if he isn't the best he is in the top 2 or 3.
    I'll agree he's in the top two or three. But so far he's proven to be better at consistently putting the Pacers in the upper echelon of the East (and occasionally the entire league) every year but he still hasn't proven that he can assemble a Champion. Hey, as those of us that tried our best to be Pacers fans in the 80s can attest to: I'll take DW and his consistency over that debacle any day of the week. But I still wonder if he's got it in him to get us over the hump.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


  10. #10

    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Geoff Petrie and Jerry West rank ahead of DW in my book.

    West needs no explanation.

    But Petri in eight years has taken the Kings from the pits to the pinnacle. I like their chances of winning it all, better than anyone else's including ours. Not saying we, or someone else, can't beat them. Just saying they look to be extremely competitive.

    Petrie traded an aging Mitch Richmond for Chris Webber. He acquired Bibby, Christie, Bobby Jackson, Vlade and Brad Miller. And drafted Peja.

    Hard to argue with Petrie's volumn of work in the first eight years. Brad Miller's loss may not have affected the ranking of DW for Pacers fans, but the deal has sure elevated the status of Petri in the rankings for SacTown fans.

    San Antonio's management has also been excellent. Yes, they got really lucky with no-brainer first overall picks Robinson and Duncan. Still SA has managed their finances extremely well and won a couple of titles. Plus they are poised to compete for another title every year for the forseeable future because of their current talent and cap space.

    Kiki Vendeweghe also deserves props in his brief tenure. He completely turned around the Denver situation. Kiki appears to be a great judge of talent and an extremely able manager of the cap.

    Who also can argue with Joe Dumars success in Detroit? He's been very successful so far, but I think maybe he tends to tinker too much, and next year he may not look as brilliant as he does right now. Joe is a gambler and Joe deserves mention in any list of productive GM's. He may yet turn out to be a failure, but he also may end up as a greater GM than player.

    Jim Paxson of the Cavs will soon get his props. Getting LeBron was part luck, but he's proving he knows how to build a team and manage the cap.

    Brother John in Chicago, on the other hand, is struggling a bit right now.

    For those who like this stuff, hoopshype.com has an informative record of transactions involving each GM.

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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    I agree Jerry is probably the best in the business.... but it's a bit difficult to compare him and DW....

    one reason being he was GM for the Lakers....probably the team every superstar would play for if they had a choice...they're a large market team in the brightest of spotlights...not a tough sell when going after star players..... When he took over as GM in '82 the Lakers were already stacked with Magic, Kareem, Worthy & Co.... after their reign was over in the 80's there was a dry spell until Shaq , Kobe & Co. came along.... I'm not trying to diminish his accomplishements...but maybe shedding a little more perspective... when making comparisons.

    What Memphis is doing is great... and he should get alot of credit for what is going on there... hiring Hubie Brown was genius...and Hubie deserves almost as much credit for getting all that talent on the same page.

    In the last 24 yrs only 7 different teams have won the NBA championship....its a tough group to break in to.

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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Jerry is great not just because he was in LA he is an excellent talent scout. He always drafted low but usually got pretty good players with those picks.

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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    ...
    Chemistry obviously is important in basketball, and Donnie Walsh has shown the ability to ignore the cries for change and let it develop. People wanted him to trade Rik Smits early in his career. They wanted him to break up the Pacers after they lost to the Knicks in the 1999 playoffs. They wanted a lot of changes during Isiah Thomas' first two seasons as coach, but he held firm except for the trade with Chicago that brought the center they lacked. They wanted him to get rid of Ron Artest. I could go on.

    ...
    Honesty time fellas - raise your hand if he is referring to you in this quote:
    "The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over and expecting different results."
    - Benjamin Franklin

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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Geoff Petrie and Jerry West rank ahead of DW in my book.

    West needs no explanation.

    But Petri in eight years has taken the Kings from the pits to the pinnacle. I like their chances of winning it all, better than anyone else's including ours. Not saying we, or someone else, can't beat them. Just saying they look to be extremely competitive.

    Petrie traded an aging Mitch Richmond for Chris Webber. He acquired Bibby, Christie, Bobby Jackson, Vlade and Brad Miller. And drafted Peja.

    Hard to argue with Petrie's volumn of work in the first eight years. Brad Miller's loss may not have affected the ranking of DW for Pacers fans, but the deal has sure elevated the status of Petri in the rankings for SacTown fans.

    San Antonio's management has also been excellent. Yes, they got really lucky with no-brainer first overall picks Robinson and Duncan. Still SA has managed their finances extremely well and won a couple of titles. Plus they are poised to compete for another title every year for the forseeable future because of their current talent and cap space.

    -snip-
    I don't really agree that Petrie is better than DW. The Maloof Bros. pretty much gave him a blank check with which to work from. I'm not sure he'd do as well as DW if he was also required to be fiscally conservative.

    Now I'll give you that he's done a better job with a blank check than Trader Bob, Nellie, S. Layden, etc. But outside of drafting Peja and trading for Bibby, everything else he's done has pretty much just involved throwing a lot of money at certain players.


    Oh, and I make it a point to never, ever, ever, ever say anything nice about Popovich as GM. As "Chuck Person's biggest fan" and an unashamed Bo Hill fan, what he did to Bo the season the Spurs had all the injuries and they way he treated Chuck and Vinnie was absolutely unjustified. Further, to blacklist Bo just because he pointed out that his firing was unjustified because his starting frontcourt of David, Chuck and Sean plus the primary backup forward Charles Smith combined to miss 263 games that season... Just so Pops could name himself coach, draft Duncan and fool everyone into thinking he's some type of genius. Yes, that's the real number, Chuck missed all 82 after back surgery, David only played in nine games and Elliot and Smith each missed more than half the games. Its not like Bo hadn't recently taken those guys to the WCF and had 62 and 59 wins in the previous two seasons.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


  15. #15
    Jimmy did what Jimmy did Bball's Avatar
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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    I don't have time to expand... but I disagree with a point in the 'answer'. I contend Walsh did start to dismantle the team in 1999 after the loss to Knicks. I've read and posted interviews that seemed to confirm that.

    I don't want to argue whether that was the right or wrong thing to do (that's not the point). I just think the answer is a bit of revisionism to make a point. The team we had in 2000 was a team with ending contracts. Contracts that Walsh had elected not to extend. The 2000 finals wasn't 'expected'... it was a surprise. That is how I read things.

    There are plenty of things that can be argued in Walsh's favor. Arguably, it could be said Walsh's decision to begin making changes after the 99 season has the Pacers in a better position today for the long haul than they would've been had he elected to keep that team together and extend certain players. I just think it is revisionist to say Walsh stood pat against those demanding change after the loss to the 99 Knicks.

    -Bball
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    "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, thatís teamwork."

    -John Wooden

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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    ...
    Chemistry obviously is important in basketball, and Donnie Walsh has shown the ability to ignore the cries for change and let it develop. People wanted him to trade Rik Smits early in his career. They wanted him to break up the Pacers after they lost to the Knicks in the 1999 playoffs. They wanted a lot of changes during Isiah Thomas' first two seasons as coach, but he held firm except for the trade with Chicago that brought the center they lacked. They wanted him to get rid of Ron Artest. I could go on.

    ...
    Honesty time fellas - raise your hand if he is referring to you in this quote:
    I was in favor of trading Smits for Billy Owens.

    I was neutral about breaking up the team following the 1999 playoffs. I thought they had peaked but since Bird was still going to be coaching for one more season then keeping them together for one last try was okay - but they still didn't win the only playoff series that matters. ed:

    The only change I wanted during Isiah's first two years was a better head coach, [size=9:90b6bdf64f]although the team clearly needed to upgrade over Zan Tabak and Sam Perkins at center. [/size]

    Prior to this season, its 100% true that I wanted nothing to do with Ron Artest on the Pacers. But that had nothing to do with basketball, it was his maddening non-basketball nonsense that I hated.
    Why do the things that we treasure most, slip away in time
    Till to the music we grow deaf, to God's beauty blind
    Why do the things that connect us slowly pull us apart?
    Till we fall away in our own darkness, a stranger to our own hearts
    And life itself, rushing over me
    Life itself, the wind in black elms,
    Life itself in your heart and in your eyes, I can't make it without you


  17. #17
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    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    Jerry is great not just because he was in LA he is an excellent talent scout. He always drafted low but usually got pretty good players with those picks.
    No question about that....

    I was referring more to if you judge a GM by their rings.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Another reason Donnie Walsh is "the best"

    YES! Finally someone else understands what I have been talking about all year. It is all about Chemistry. Trading for talent when there isn't a serious problem in the middle of a season is almost always going to hinder rather than help because of that. That was always my reasoning with AL

    Pacers have been playing together for a long time now, that should give them the advantage over other teams like the knicks who have great talent but no chemistry yet cause they dont know eachother as well on the court.

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