I've watched him play about 7 times or so. I didn't look at the highlight clips 1) Because I'm not a believer in highlights you can make just about anybody look good that way 2) Because to me watching his game his greatest attribute he brings to a team wasn't his highlight plays or flashy passes. It is his leadership qualities and the way he demands effort from his teammates and elevates their games. Think of the passion of Eric Snow(In his Sixer days) but with more talent. He isn't Iverson,Wade,Kidd,Bibby etc.,, but what he can be is a guy that can shoot 3-13 in a game but still do the little things that don't show up in a box score to help your team win the game.
He is the type of player that would take a charge and get up and pump his fist and demand that effort from his teammates. He is also the type that would chew a teammate out if he blew a defensive rotation etc.,,, Larry Bird was like that and that could be why he wants him on the Pacers.
Potential problems I could see with his transition to the NBA game..
1) He might not be able to lead a team like he does in Europe because making 3-4 million per year and coming from Europe he won't have the same respect from his teammates like he does over there where he has led them to Championships. How would JO or Jackson react the 1st time this guy tries to call them out on the court or would he not even bother to call guys out instead taking a more passive attitude which would take away one of his greatest assets to a team?
2) From what I've seen of him he plays the game at a frantic pace throwing his body all over the court and that could reduce his effectiveness with the grind of an 82 game schedule.
Would he beat out Tinsley? On talent alone I would say no.
But Bird has won multiple Championships and he may have decided that Tinsley isn't the answer to lead the team to a Championship because of 1)Physically breaking down 2) Lack of mental toughness/leadership in pressure situations. Remember in terms of mental toughness Bird was one of the best ever in that aspect of the game. See Jay's great post about not being built for a Championship Bird might feel the same way about Tinsley. I think Peck mentioned during the Detroit series that at times he felt Tinsley was playing out of control like Iverson does at the point with sloppy TO's/ driving into traffic etc.,, and Bird and maybe even Carlise who is pretty conservative as an offensive coach may have been pulling their hair out watching that take place.
So my answer would be it depends on what direction Bird wants to take and if he feels Tinsley can lead the Pacers to a Championship because next season if healthy the Pacers should probably be right up there at that elite level again. He may accept a talent downgrade at the starting point guard spot in favor of his style of play and a guy who can provide some leadership to a volatile starting core of JO,Artest and Jackson. That starting 3 is extremely talented but it is also a powder keg.
He may just want to add him to bolster your 2nd unit and to have as a great insurance policy in case Tinsley goes down again because changing starting point guards would be a major shakeup and a pretty big risk. So it depends on how the Pacers view Tinsley in terms of leading them to a Championship and Pacers fans would know way more about that than me.
I'm sure Ragnar probably threw a soda can at his monitor a couple of paragraphs ago.