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Thread: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    I suppose you could say that Jeff got the starting job back by default or by Murphy's subpar play - and if you want to say that - that is fine. My point is that ever since Brad Miller left, a number of players have been brought in to supposedly beat Jeff out and put Jeff back in his rightful place - that being the bench. But it never happens, Jeff always ends up as the starter.

    Many thought that when O'Brien was hired, surely Jeff would now be coming off the bench, surely Jim would be smarter than Rick. But no, Foster is back in the starting lineup where he rightfully belongs.

    http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dl...TS04/712030379


    Pacers notebook
    O'Brien settles on a new lineup



    By Mike Wells
    mike.wells@indystar.com

    LOS ANGELES -- One of the first things Jim O'Brien said when he was named coach of the Indiana Pacers was that he doesn't just hand out playing time.


    O'Brien is delivering that message now.

    The Pacers coach removed Troy Murphy from the starting lineup in favor of Jeff Foster, who is starting with the team's core group -- Jermaine O'Neal, Jamaal Tinsley, Mike Dunleavy and Danny Granger.

    "The best five-man lineup we have when you evaluate every lineup we have is the one with Jeff Foster and Jermaine," O'Brien said. "They are better than the other lineup."
    O'Brien gave indications a possible lineup switch was coming last week when he started Shawne Williams over Murphy at Denver. O'Brien said he made the switch to counter Denver's small lineup. Then he went with the O'Neal-Foster combination at Seattle on Friday.

    Murphy, who has started 282 games in his career, is averaging 11.3 points and 6.2 rebounds this season. He had five points and four rebounds in almost 20 minutes against the Los Angeles Clippers on Sunday.

    O'Brien said he didn't explain the switch to Murphy.

    "The bottom line is our guys know that my door is open from a standpoint of playing time and talking to them about it," O'Brien said. "You take one lineup and there's an enormous difference. If he wants to find out why, I'd be happy to explain it to him."
    Last edited by Unclebuck; 12-03-2007 at 09:02 AM.

  2. #2
    Member OTD's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    UB It took 17 games instead of 3or4 that I said whe the season started. I missed how many but it still did not take much time.

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by OTD View Post
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    UB It took 17 games instead of 3or4 that I said whe the season started. I missed how many but it still did not take much time.
    Part of the reason why it took thids long is because Murphy was injured to start the season and JO has been injured lately, so this is the first time both are healthy so this is probably the earliest a decision could be made

    I think Jeff is having his best season, and thankfully Jeff has a coach who is encouraging him to shoot the ball.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    I believe I said Jeff would win his starting spot back within the first 10 games, so I guess I was off by a little as well. I think Foster has slowly earned respect for what he brings to the team. It kills me how many people over the past few years wanted whatever center was available to replace Foster. Dampier, Magloire, Mohammed, and Murphy. Unfortunately they got their wish with Murphy and his unmovable contract. I'm probably missing someone... oh yeah Harrison was ready to take over at the beginning of last season wasn't he? Foster will never be a top 5 center, but he's better then any of those players today. With the depth we have at the 4/5 right now, I hope the next trade does something to improve our team at the 2.

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    For the record - there were a number of us who figured that Jeff would win his starting job back -

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    I don't understand why it took this long. Yeah I know Murphy was injured but I cant think of a time in the history of man where Murpny outplayed Jeff.

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    White and Nerdy Anthem's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck View Post
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    For the record - there were a number of us who figured that Jeff would win his starting job back -
    Hear hear.
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Ragnar View Post
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    I don't understand why it took this long. Yeah I know Murphy was injured but I cant think of a time in the history of man where Murpny outplayed Jeff.
    maybe the dallas game, murphy was one of the biggest reasons why we won it (not counting the phantom 3).

    i think many of us, including myself, believed that because of jeff's offensive liabilities and JO'Bs style that the two wouldn't mesh. none of us knew exactly how JO'B was going to coach this team and nobody knew foster would whip out a midrange game suddenly (quite a nice surprise). there was also the thought that given murphy's 3pt shooting, obrien would mazximize his game a little like antoine walker. that hasn't happened. i'm perfectly happy and always have been, with jeff's game. i don't enjoy the missed point-blank layups but i hate that about murphy and dunleavy's game too. i just thought obrien would function differently.

    mainly i'm unclear why unclebuck takes where jeff begins the game so personally. let it go, jeff has.
    This is the darkest timeline.

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    Grumpy Old Man (PD host) able's Avatar
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    there's only one player on this roster Jeff may have at one stage some fear of losing his starting job to, and it is a BIG IF, but that'd be David
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Good for Jeff, and right now it's the right thing to do.

    But this is yet again just saying we're not where we need to be when it comes to starting front court quality. Jeff's good, but he's not that good when we're talking about starting 5's. At least not ones that would eventually be competing for a ring. For the time being, it's fine. But if we start to climb this year or next year, we still need a better option starting there to win big.

    Jeff is great until you put him against one of the best. He's fine until it's Rasheed Wallace. Or Dwight Howard. Or Yao. Or Duncan (yeah he does what he can). Or others my mind refuses to pull up right now.

    Well, let me be fair to Jeff too. If you don't try to make him do anything offensively under the post, you might be OK, but the man is a blocked shot waiting to happen under there against anyone who's half-way decent at protecting the rim.

    Let me put it another way: If Jeff were a good finisher, I wouldn't feel nearly as "bad" about him being our permanent solution.

    Meanwhile if some of you want to do a dance because Murphy's a let down..... OK. I guess.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by able View Post
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    there's only one player on this roster Jeff may have at one stage some fear of losing his starting job to, and it is a BIG IF, but that'd be David
    that is certainly possible. i also wouldn't rule out him inserting shawne later on in the season in the starting lineup at the 4.
    This is the darkest timeline.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal View Post
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    Jeff is great until you put him against one of the best. He's fine until it's Rasheed Wallace. Or Dwight Howard. Or Yao. Or Duncan (yeah he does what he can). Or others my mind refuses to pull up right now.
    I think just the opposite. If there's something I don't want to see, it's Murphy against Sheed/Howard/Yao/Duncan. And I feel that way about both sides of the court.
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Anthem View Post
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    I think just the opposite. If there's something I don't want to see, it's Murphy against Sheed/Howard/Yao/Duncan. And I feel that way about both sides of the court.
    I'm not even talking about Murphy and I agree he's gonna look bad too. We need better.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Mal
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    Oh..... Hooray for Foster.
    And I won't be here to see the day
    It all dries up and blows away
    I'd hang around just to see
    But they never had much use for me
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Putnam View Post
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    Who is that awful looking picture in your avatar?



    Oh..... Hooray for Foster.
    Beetlejuice, I think.

    Maybe he wants AJ back?

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Mal, I think my point about Jeff over the years is that almost everyone says "we need someone better" and you know I hope someday we do find someone better, mainly because it will take a pretty good player to beat him out so if we can get a good enough player to beat him out, we'll be in good shape. The only player that has to this point is a two time allstar - Brad Miller. And that was back when Jeff was pretty young and Brad was in his prime.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Putnam View Post
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    Who is that awful looking picture in your avatar?
    I can't see it... I adblocked it.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Its the Joker(Heath Ledger) from the forthcoming Batman movie.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Foster's probably a top 15 center so I can't see anything shocking about him starting.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by able View Post
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    there's only one player on this roster Jeff may have at one stage some fear of losing his starting job to, and it is a BIG IF, but that'd be David
    I'd say both Shawne and Ike would be more likely.
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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Anybody notice how David Harrison is progressing? Averaging 10-12 points a game, several blocks per game, intimidating guys driving the lane... fouls are getting fewer per minutes played. By the end of the year, as coach OB keeps working with him, he just might be our starting center...our atleast rotating with Foster.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    I've always loved watching Jeff, but this year he has turned in to my favorite player to watch play, especially since he has been hitting down that 16-19 foot jumper with regularity.

    It almost makes me mad every time he is talked about for his rebounding by other teams brodcasters though because that is so overdone. Why does nobody ever talk about his defense? Do all these basketball "experts" really not realize that Jeff is one of the elite post defenders in this league?

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Isaac View Post
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    It almost makes me mad every time he is talked about for his rebounding by other teams brodcasters though because that is so overdone. Why does nobody ever talk about his defense? Do all these basketball "experts" really not realize that Jeff is one of the elite post defenders in this league?
    Amen.

    I suppose it is possible that I overrate Jeff's defense, but I think he's an outstanding defensively player - although I wouldn't classify him as a post defender (although it seems like there are different definition for what a post defender is. Is it a guy who guards the post player, or is it the guy who is ready in the lane to block shots and take charges. Jeff clearly isn't that good of a shotblocker. Jeff is best defending the ball.

    One thing I always enjoy seeing is when Jeff is switched onto a small forward or even a shooting guard - the offensive player always thinks he can go right around jeff - but they rarely do and they usually have to pass the ball back out after jeff cuts off their drive.

    I don't post or even say much about Jeff's defense anymore, I had gotten tired of arguing about it. If Jeff was an above average shot blocker - he would make one of the all- defensive teams. But he doesn't get any notoriety for his defense because he's never in the highlights getting block shots. But the number of times per game Jeff is able to keep his guy in front of him is a very high number. He also gets a fair number of deflections.

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Putnam View Post
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    Who is that awful looking picture in your avatar?



    Oh..... Hooray for Foster.
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    Beetlejuice, I think.

    Maybe he wants AJ back?
    It's the Joker from "The Dark Knight" (comes out next June/July).

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    Default Re: Foster does it again, earns his starting job back

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck View Post
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    Mal, I think my point about Jeff over the years is that almost everyone says "we need someone better" and you know I hope someday we do find someone better, mainly because it will take a pretty good player to beat him out so if we can get a good enough player to beat him out, we'll be in good shape. The only player that has to this point is a two time allstar - Brad Miller. And that was back when Jeff was pretty young and Brad was in his prime.
    Ahem.....

    There was another certain player who returned to the Pacers the season of the brawl and took over the starting center spot and remained the starter the rest of the year. Jeff got to start for awhile, but he did it at the power forward spot when J.O. went down with the shoulder injury. When J.O. returned Jeff went to the bench where he remained. He got lot's of min. off of the bench, but he never took back over the starters spot that I can remember.

    You wanna guess who?

    But besides that I would like to say here and now this.

    Jeff Foster is playing the best basketball of his career. He is playing a far more rounded game than ever before and as I said a couple of years ago. The older Jeff gets, the less athletic Jeff gets, the more I like him.

    He is now actually obtaining real rebounds, not chasing down loose balls and being credited with rebounds. He is now putting a body on his man on defense and not just relying on foot speed to defend the perimeter.

    He is now at least involved in the offense.

    Now having said all of that I want to say this.

    I still hate with the passion of a white hot sun Jeff Foster and Jermaine O'Neal together in the game.

    I love Jeff with Danny and Shawne. I really liked him and Ike.

    But I can't stand him and O'Neal together and until one of their games change I don't think I ever will.

    BTW, while I have always aknowledged that Jeff is a good defender and a good rebounder. Please please please let's not go over board and proclaim him an elite defender.

    Hakeem was an elite defender. Charles Oakley was a great defender. Jeff Foster is a good defender.

    There is nothing wrong with being a good defender btw, I'm just saying elite is a tad much.

    As to Murphy????

    Well, obviously right now there seems to be some heat between O'Brien and him so we'll see where that goes.

    BTW, I have no problem at all with the coach holding player accountable and calling them out in public.

    Now let's see if he does that across the board.


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