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Thread: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

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    ENABEABLER MagicRat's Avatar
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    Default Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dl...TS04/704290415

    Pacers co-owner expects a rebound

    Herb Simon says team has a lot to make up for to fans

    The Indiana Pacers' coaching staff will be overhauled next season, and perhaps its roster as well.

    The executive front office, meanwhile, will remain intact in tweaked form. Co-owner Herb Simon and Donnie Walsh confirmed that Walsh will return as CEO in an open-ended arrangement.

    It is the role Walsh intended for himself when he hired Larry Bird as team president four years ago, an arrangement that changed after the brawl at the Palace of Auburn Hills on Nov. 19, 2004. Bird will be in charge of basketball decisions. Walsh will oversee the operations of Pacers Sports and Entertainment Inc. and be available for advice.

    "Donnie is going to be with us as long as he wants," Simon said in a telephone interview with The Star.

    "The only question is when he wants to retire. I'll never stop him from doing that, but I hope he stays as long as I'm here. He's done a remarkable job, both on the court and in the office."

    Simon, meanwhile, believes better days are ahead for the Pacers. If nothing else, the law of averages demands it after three consecutive difficult seasons, including this year's failure to reach the playoffs for the first time in 10 years.

    "How long are you going to be snake-bit?" Simon wondered. "There are only so many snakes."

    Simon discussed other issues related to the franchise in a wide-ranging question-and-answer session.

    Question: How do you view the state of the franchise at the moment?
    Answer: I'm very disappointed over what's happened the past couple of years. Things got away from us. We owe the fans and the community a lot to make up for it and put back a team that can be respectable and earn the praises of the community again.

    Q: As you look back at the past few years, do you second-guess any decisions made by the franchise?
    A: You can't go back and second-guess. We were bitten by some bad luck. And some of it is our own doing. You can't avoid responsibility. Starting with the (brawl) in Detroit, which was a perfect storm, things regressed. It's a three-year drought. We still made the playoffs two years, but something was taken out of that franchise from that situation. We're determined to re-create the good feelings we've had over the years, starting now.

    Q: Larry Bird and Donnie Walsh have taken a tremendous amount of criticism recently. Do you believe it's warranted?
    A: We all deserve criticism. This is where we are. They're big boys and they can live with it. They know what they can do to improve it. We've got some real good experience between Donnie and Larry. Donnie built the teams that stayed in the playoffs for nine straight years and Larry's got a world of knowledge. Together, we have a powerful front office.

    Q: Will any off-court issues that come up in the future be handled differently?
    A: I want to get it straight that we're very supportive of the players. If there are problems we'll deal with them, but until they're really guilty of something, we have to support them. Now, will there be a better understanding among the players and coaches and Larry that some of this activity has to be curtailed? I know Larry has already spoken to the players and they're very supportive of a more controlled situation during the season. They're good people. You talk to anyone . . . as people, they're very nice people. Sometimes mistakes are made, but we can't let that happen.

    Q: How close do you believe the team, as it stands now, is to being competitive again.
    A: I went over this with Larry and Donnie. They feel we have very good players. Maybe we have to tweak the team a little bit. We'll always be looking to improve the team. Maybe we have to change the atmosphere. Maybe a new coach will change things and get everyone closer together. We need a new start.

    Q: Has all that's happened the past few years affected your level of dedication?
    A: Yes. Quite frankly, it's embarrassing to me and my family, some of these things that have happened. We know how dedicated we are to Indiana. You just don't ever want the fans to not feel proud of our team. I'm doubly dedicated and I made it clear to Donnie and Larry that they have to be doubly dedicated.

    Q: Do you have a timetable for becoming a playoff team again, or a contender?
    A: That doesn't mean anything, even if we had one. We feel we're a playoff team now. Injuries and outside influences and loss of confidence, or whatever it was, hurt us. We'll get everything moving again. We're a playoff team right now. But I'm not the basketball expert, I want you to know that.

    Q: In what ways would you like the team to be different next season?
    A: As a fan, I'd like to see a more up-tempo team and a more interesting system. That's as a fan.


    Q: What can you do to win back the fans, other than winning?
    A: We're going to do everything we can to explain what we're doing, to let them know we're not going to slip again and make sure every Pacers fan will be proud to come to our games. We've always been that way. I just want to think of this as a three-year malaise.

    Q: Do you expect fans will come back if you have a winning team next season?
    A: I hope so. I hope people look at our history (as owners since 1983) and don't let the last three years affect their outlook too much. Mel (his co-owner and brother) and I and the Simon family have stood for good values and we've tried to run a first-class operation. We're spending more money than a market this size should spend on talent. We haven't tried to avoid responsibility. We just fell down. Now we have to recoup our form and go on. I hope people take our whole history into account.

    Q: How long do you want to remain as an owner of this franchise? (Herb is 71 years old and Mel is 79.)
    A: I've set no time limit. I don't even like to think about that.

    Q: How many seasons has the team turned a profit since you took over as owners?
    A: The word profitable is a funny word. There are a lot of ways to measure that. In this market it's very difficult to be profitable. The last couple of years the losses have been significant, for various reasons. Mel and I never got this team to make our fortune on it. We wanted to keep it in our community and make people proud of it. We wanted a winning team and a championship team. Money hasn't been our motive. Not that we like losing money, but we're here to put the best product out there that we can.

    Q: Could you have imagined what you were getting into when you bought this franchise?
    A: No. Absolutely not. No one likes to be embarrassed in their own hometown. But that's over.

    Call Star reporter Mark Montieth at (317) 444-6406
    PSN: MRat731 XBL: MRat0731

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    How are you here? Kegboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says......

    Well, there's the word on Donnie, at least.

    I don't like the whole "we just need tweaks" mindset, but that may be just spin. I sure hope it is. That said, we all know Herb and Mel have a hands off approach; them trying to take the blame for Artest not withstanding.
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    Default Re: Simon Says......

    Quote Originally Posted by Kegboy View Post
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    Well, there's the word on Donnie, at least.

    I don't like the whole "we just need tweaks" mindset, but that may be just spin. I sure hope it is.

    I agree. I hope he was spinning like a darn top when he said that.

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    Default Re: Simon Says......

    Quote Originally Posted by Kegboy View Post
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    Well, there's the word on Donnie, at least.

    I don't like the whole "we just need tweaks" mindset, but that may be just spin. I sure hope it is. That said, we all know Herb and Mel have a hands off approach; them trying to take the blame for Artest not withstanding.
    Are you sure about that? It's been said that it was "ownership" that put the brakes on Larry trading Ron Artest to Sacramento before the brawl. IMHO, with the way that the Simons are on different NBA commities (rules, relocation), I believe that the Simons are a little more hands on with the franchise then we are led to believe.

    As for the interview, I found it interesting that Mel made a point to mention that he would want "As a fan, I'd like to see a more up-tempo team and a more interesting system. That's as a fan." Maybe the decision to let Carlisle walk came from the top?!?
    ...Still "flying casual"
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    I wasn't thrilled with this interview. If the team were changing its stance on players who act up off the court, I'd be optimistic. But we're not. I've yet to be convinced a damn thing has changed to where if someone screws up, the consequences are swift and hard to make a stand on that kind of thing. Instead it's more of "we love you until the judge says not to", which is a nice philosophy, but I think it de-fangs you and allows this kind of thing to continue.

    And did anyone else imagine Homer Simpson delivering the line "The word profitable is a funny word." ?

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    Banned Jermaniac's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Q: In what ways would you like the team to be different next season?
    A: As a fan, I'd like to see a more up-tempo team and a more interesting system. That's as a fan.

    Thank God, I hope they dont let Bird hire Rick Carlisle Vol 2

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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    ^^ that obviously was the philosophy for this past season, but we all don't need to refresh that memory!!! That's why I know they won't hire Czar!!!

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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Is the current roster built to play like an up-tempo team?

    My guess is no. If that is the case...is it best to mold the team into something that it is not?

    I don't like the concept of being up tempo cuz its more fun and more interesting to the fan. Proverbially, we can't make a Chevy truck operate like a Ferarri. I would much rather play to the style that the likely roster dictates....not bow to the trend of the NBA cuz its "en vogue" because its more fun.
    Ash from Army of Darkness: Good...Bad...I'm the guy with the gun.

    This is David West, he is the Honey Badger, West just doesn't give a *****....he's pretty bad *ss cuz he has no regard for any other Player or Team whatsoever.

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    Boom Baby'er ABADays's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    I feel bad for the Simons. They've done too much for the city and this franchise to have gone through all this BS.
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    I think we should REALLY be happy with the owners of this franchise.

    True, I didn't like the tweaks part either, on the other hand he also says that he's not a basketball expert which could be code for either we haven't really made up mind up yet or that the front office could make a different assesment.

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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal View Post
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    I wasn't thrilled with this interview. If the team were changing its stance on players who act up off the court, I'd be optimistic. But we're not. I've yet to be convinced a damn thing has changed to where if someone screws up, the consequences are swift and hard to make a stand on that kind of thing.
    Artest is gone, Jackson is gone, other than Tinsley and Harrison who should get the boot in the backside?
    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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    Administrator Roaming Gnome's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal View Post
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    I wasn't thrilled with this interview. If the team were changing its stance on players who act up off the court, I'd be optimistic. But we're not. I've yet to be convinced a damn thing has changed to where if someone screws up, the consequences are swift and hard to make a stand on that kind of thing. Instead it's more of "we love you until the judge says not to", which is a nice philosophy, but I think it de-fangs you and allows this kind of thing to continue.
    Honestly, do you want the ownership to have the same "rush to judgement" feeding frenzy that the local media and a lot of our fans have fallen into? Hell, we have had time for the smoke to clear on all the business at 8 second saloon, but no one still doesn't know which end is up in that mess. It's hard for me to believe testimony from the "complaintent" that is being FORCED to testify.

    Some of you want to see players cut and suspended on the event of any charges, but really what are the owners to do until there is a conviction? I'm sure there are "collectively bargained language" that makes punishment before conviction a no-no, unless they pay them! Anyway, what does ownership get if the charges turn out to be "trumped up non-sense" (kinda like this whole 8 Sec. mess is looking to be)? They get a locker room full of players that don't like/trust mgmt/ownership. Granted, I know some of you say, so what...But, a happy workplace goes a long way for anyone. Why have that friction when it is not really neccessary, they know just like some of us...The fans are going to lash out because they are not happy with the end results in the win/loss column.
    ...Still "flying casual"
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Really disappointed in the whole tone of the interview.

    Looks like more of the same.

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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    I hope that some changes does come....but what Simon says is really no different then what we have heard during the last 3 offseasons.
    Ash from Army of Darkness: Good...Bad...I'm the guy with the gun.

    This is David West, he is the Honey Badger, West just doesn't give a *****....he's pretty bad *ss cuz he has no regard for any other Player or Team whatsoever.

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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    The Indiana Pacers' coaching staff will be overhauled next season, and perhaps its roster as well.

    The coaching staff will be overhauled next season..... That is good.....
    Pehaps its roster as well...... That is bad.....
    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: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    I don't get the Simons. Sometimes I think that the Pacers are their gift to the city, tax write-off and they are willing to take financial losses since their other businesses do so well. I don't think not winning is as important as having players who are not an embarassment to the team and city.

    Some owners clearly want to make as much as possible and measure success by how well their teams do. The simons IMO measure success in how many simon malls there are in the world. That is all going to change however when the new generation takes control and this team better be competitive.

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    Boom Baby'er ABADays's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    The new generation? Who or what are you talking about?
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Quote Originally Posted by ABADays View Post
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    The new generation? Who or what are you talking about?
    I assume he's talking about the son who some assume is going to get the team when Herb and Mel are gone.

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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    I like Herb's statements about "as a fan" wanting a more uptempo team...but the "tweaking the team a little bit" and the "we really like the players we have" comments scare me.

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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Quote Originally Posted by RWB View Post
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    Artest is gone, Jackson is gone, other than Tinsley and Harrison who should get the boot in the backside?
    Those two are plenty. Though if JO wants to have a "heated conversation" again 8 games in, I may lump him in there too with a * by his name to distance him from those two.

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    NaptownSeth is all feel Naptown_Seth's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Quote Originally Posted by CableKC View Post
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    Is the current roster built to play like an up-tempo team?

    My guess is no. If that is the case...is it best to mold the team into something that it is not?

    I don't like the concept of being up tempo cuz its more fun and more interesting to the fan. Proverbially, we can't make a Chevy truck operate like a Ferarri. I would much rather play to the style that the likely roster dictates....not bow to the trend of the NBA cuz its "en vogue" because its more fun.
    They would have been if they had traded JO, Tins and Powell for Baron, Ellis and Pietrus instead of the Jack/Al deal.

    Seriously though, have you watched the GS/DAL games? GS is 2nd only to PHX right now as the most pleasant and exciting team to watch play. Constant movement on both end of the court, guys fill each other's spaces at every opportunity. If a guy drives the lane the wing swings to the top so he can dump it back for a 2nd attack if he needs it, plus you have defensive help back if he loses it in the lane. Same thing on defense, they come to the ball as well as anyone right now.

    It's funny that the trade turned the Warriors into exactly what TPTP were saying they wanted to be in the preseason last year. Hard for me to buy into it this time around after seeing the results this season. Not sure Larry understands how to build that type of team.

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    NaptownSeth is all feel Naptown_Seth's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Quote Originally Posted by RWB View Post
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    Artest is gone, Jackson is gone, other than Tinsley and Harrison who should get the boot in the backside?
    I'm sick of the way Ike mouths off.



    ie, I agree totally. Horses are out and people want to close the barn door still.

  23. #23

    Default Re: Simon Says: Future Is Bright......

    Quote Originally Posted by ABADays View Post
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    The new generation? Who or what are you talking about?
    Yes the next generation of Simon kids. Mel is 79 and Herb is 73 and a slew of younger Simons are in place.

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    How are you here? Kegboy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Simon Says......

    Quote Originally Posted by Roaming Gnome View Post
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    Are you sure about that? It's been said that it was "ownership" that put the brakes on Larry trading Ron Artest to Sacramento before the brawl. IMHO, with the way that the Simons are on different NBA commities (rules, relocation), I believe that the Simons are a little more hands on with the franchise then we are led to believe.
    I really think that's a smokescreen. We've heard for many years from many different sources (including Donnie) that the Simons are hands off when it comes to personnel and they always had complete trust in Donnie to handle such matters. You could make the argument for them stepping in for somebody who helped at the gate or with PR, but Ron was never a beloved figure. I am totally convinced that rumor was them falling on their sword to save face for Donnie and Larry.
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    Default Re: Simon Says......

    Quote Originally Posted by Kegboy View Post
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    I really think that's a smokescreen. We've heard for many years from many different sources (including Donnie) that the Simons are hands off when it comes to personnel and they always had complete trust in Donnie to handle such matters. You could make the argument for them stepping in for somebody who helped at the gate or with PR, but Ron was never a beloved figure. I am totally convinced that rumor was them falling on their sword to save face for Donnie and Larry.
    I know for a fact that the Harrington trade this past summer was delayed for many weeks because one of the Simons got involved.
    “Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” - Winston Churchill

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