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Thread: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

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    Member indyblue47's Avatar
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    Default Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    http://www.indystar.com/apps/pbcs.dl...nletter-sports


    Pacers' Bird unsure of his future
    Team president knows his job, like others, will be evaluated by Simon




    By Mike Wells
    mike.wells@indystar.com

    Less than two weeks after Indiana Pacers co-owner Herb Simon promised offseason changes, team president Larry Bird said Monday he can't be certain whether he will return next season.





    "I don't know," Bird said when asked if he believed he and CEO Donnie Walsh would be here next season. "We'll just wait and see.
    "Donnie's been a great man to work for and I love everything about him. He paid his dues, came up from the bottom, assistant coach, was on the bench, got in the front office and had a fine career. He's just as sick over (the team's performance) as I am."
    The Pacers, who beat New York 110-98 Monday, are 26-41.
    Speculation about Bird's and Walsh's future with the Pacers started March 7 when Simon said he plans to meet with team officials about restructuring the franchise.
    There's a strong belief that either Bird or Walsh will return -- but not both.
    "If it's changing everybody, it's changing everybody," Bird said. "I would like an opportunity to try to do it. . . . I think there's a lot of blame that can be passed around, and obviously it starts at the top. When you're at the top, you have to take the hits like everybody else."
    The New York Daily News reported Monday the Knicks might be interested in having Walsh replace Isiah Thomas as team president. There are several teams, the Pacers included, interested in Walsh.
    Walsh again declined comment.
    Bird said he had "no clue" about whether Walsh had met with the Knicks.
    "Somebody (Monday) told me that he met with them," Bird said. "But I got too much respect for the man to sit here and tell you I knew or I didn't know. But I wouldn't ask him that question. It's none of my business."


    Call Star reporter Mike Wells at (317) 444-6053.

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    dennaB Twes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Don't take this the wrong way. I would love to see Larry Bird be successful here. I would love to see an Indiana guy take this team all the way to Championships.

    But doesn't he come across as absolutely clueless.

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by Twes View Post
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    Don't take this the wrong way. I would love to see Larry Bird be successful here. I would love to see an Indiana guy take this team all the way to Championships.

    But doesn't he come across as absolutely clueless.
    I wouldn't say he comes across as clueless. I'd say he comes across as someone who expects every player to work hard, treat basketball like a job, and live up to his potential. He expects players to be like he was, like Reggie was. He comes across to me as disappointed.

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    Member indyblue47's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    I'd have to agree Twes!

    Larry was one of the best players I ever saw, and I loved watching the battles with the Lakers, but as a GM, he doesn't carry the same vision he did as a player.
    Maybe it's not entirely all his fault, as DW just (supposedly) turned over the reins to him 2 years ago, but the last 2 years haven't been a bed of roses either. His inability to push "any" button during this trading deadline has further tarnished my view of him.

    I still love the Pacers and I absolutely enjoyed the game last night. The guys that are on the floor give it everything they have!!

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by Twes View Post
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    Don't take this the wrong way. I would love to see Larry Bird be successful here. I would love to see an Indiana guy take this team all the way to Championships.

    But doesn't he come across as absolutely clueless.
    It's like taking the master welder and promoting him to CFO of Welder's International.

    Bird was a helluva performer. Great work ethic. But he is a fish out of water in more sophisticated environments. A GM must have savvy, people skills, and a certain comfort with intrigue. Bird has none of those.

    Fire him. And Donnie.
    .

    .

    .

    .


    “People talk about how quiet he [McKey] is, but he’s really been helpful. He gives a lot of insight to players in how to guard certain teams and what their weaknesses are. The whole team listens to him, and it makes my job a lot easier. Having players like him is what pro basketball is all about for me.” —Larry Brown

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    White and Nerdy Anthem's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by indyblue47 View Post
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    "Somebody (Monday) told me that he met with them," Bird said. "But I got too much respect for the man to sit here and tell you I knew or I didn't know. But I wouldn't ask him that question. It's none of my business."
    What a bizarre quote. Surely he doesn't believe this?
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    I think Donnie is an awesome GM and there's no reason to look for anybody else! he helped this franchise get to the top and stay there for nearly a decade! he's the one that gave us such high standards regarding the competitiveness of the team-
    teams go through bad times too- its how this league is built- no team stays in the bottom forever and every franchise has the chance to get to the top- but you cant expect to stay at the top all the time. i think it would be a mistake letting Walsh go.
    bird is a different subject- i still dont know what to think of him

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    I never thought Bird would make a good GM (or whatever title you want to give him) his people skills are horrible, I believe in order to be a good GM you have to get along well with agents, other GM's, players, even the media - Walsh was excellent at all that

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    MJ is probably the best ever and I think he sucks at being a GM.

    I don't think Bird is stupid, I think he's simple and naive.

    I think everything is Black and White with him, no not like that.

    I think he makes an opinion too readily and then becomes so married to that opinion that it is his undoing.

    I'm all for plain spoken and simplifying things, but you have to do you homework or have a somewhat elaborate system in place to build a team.

    I think this is his downfall, he gets set in his mindset and therefore can't be light on his feet and react to circumstances very well or anticipate at all.

    You can't operate like that. I'm all about sticking to your guns and having an opinion, but when it comes to the NBA you have to be creative and anticipate things, this isn't Bird at all.

    I wonder if its the emporers new clothes scenario or if there are people around him that actually advise him that know what they are doing.

    I think Bird would be a good scout, not the head of scouting, but a scout. I'd bet he'd enjoy it more anyway. I don't think when he signed on, he expected this crap storm.
    Last edited by Speed; 03-18-2008 at 09:34 AM.

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    What about Billy King as our next GM. Sure he got fired in Philly, but look at how well the Sixers have been playing lately and how many really good young players they have on that team.

    I don't know the relationship between King and O'Brien (they were together in Philly).

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck View Post
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    What about Billy King as our next GM. Sure he got fired in Philly, but look at how well the Sixers have been playing lately and how many really good young players they have on that team.

    I don't know the relationship between King and O'Brien (they were together in Philly).
    Whew, for a second there I read that as Billy Knight.
    If you get to thinkin’ you’re a person of some influence, try orderin’ somebody else’s dog around..

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck View Post
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    What about Billy King as our next GM.
    no
    This is the darkest timeline.

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    It Might Be a Soft J JayRedd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by DgR View Post
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    i think it would be a mistake letting Walsh go.
    First off, IMO, we're not "letting Walsh go." The dude is leaving. He's had a good run and wants to move on to the next phase of his life -- whatever that may be. And unless he wakes up with a horsehead under his sheets, he will not be in Conseco come June.

    Secondly, I know this is going to devolve into another "here's a list of all the crappy things Larry has done thread" but once again, all the guy does from a communicating to fans perspective tell the truth in plain English. All he's saying here is: "I'm well aware I might get fired. I don't wanna be canned, but that's life. And I don't know what Donnie is doing. Or if I do, I'm sure as hell not telling you."

    I still wonder why some of you constantly complain about TPTB being disengenuous with their plans or motives. We probably have the most open and plain-speaking front office in the NBA. Outside of Cuban, Thorn and our co-GMs, very, very few other execs tell it like it is. And for all his flaws, Bird regularly does that. Say what you want about his exagerrations on Kareem and his overzealous praise for Diener (God knows I thought both comments were absurd, but I don't think he didn't believe them), and say what you want about all the questionable transactions over the past few years, but if there's one thing Larry Bird does, its call em like he sees em.
    Last edited by JayRedd; 03-18-2008 at 09:48 AM.

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by avoidingtheclowns View Post
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    no
    OK, would you like to tell us why. You think he did a poor job with the Sixers. Remember during the Brown years Brown was calling the shots.

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    It Might Be a Soft J JayRedd's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by avoidingtheclowns View Post
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    no
    I second that motion.

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Is there a Colangelo around thats available?

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Bird is Gone!!!
    R.I.P. Bernic Mac & Isaac Hayes

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    dennaB Twes's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    I just think in Birds current role he needs to understand he's the man.

    There really should be nothing going on with the organization that he doesn't know about , understand and have an active role in.

    The way he talks he reveals that he's in the dark. Sitting in some office like a figurehead rather than a central player dictating what happens with the team.

    He comes across to me like he defers to other people when he's the guy who needs to grab hold and take charge. A little meek maybe.

    I have no problem with plain speaking. He just doesn't come across to me as the guy in charge with a plan.

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by Unclebuck View Post
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    OK, would you like to tell us why.
    why? well...

    mutombo
    mckie
    kenny thomas
    snow
    buckner
    skinner
    dalembert
    kukoc
    van horn
    glenn robinson
    cwebb

    he signed and traded for these guys -- KILLED cap space until this summer -- all during iverson's prime. then he ended up getting jobbed in the iverson trade. all of this without chronic injuries to iverson (like with JO) or a major franchise-crippling, PR nightmare castastro***** (like, say, the brawl).

    essentially what i'm trying to say is that were billy king still in philly he'd probably sign david harrison for the full MLE.

    did he draft well? drafted iggy in the lotto, found dalembert in the late 1st, traded for korver... sure. very nice pickups. isiah drafts well too (camby, tmac, damon stoudamire, lee). isiah also makes ridiculous trades and signings... would he be on your short list too?
    Last edited by avoidingtheclowns; 03-18-2008 at 10:46 AM.
    This is the darkest timeline.

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by indyblue47 View Post
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    I'd have to agree Twes!

    Larry was one of the best players I ever saw, and I loved watching the battles with the Lakers, but as a GM, he doesn't carry the same vision he did as a player.
    Maybe it's not entirely all his fault, as DW just (supposedly) turned over the reins to him 2 years ago, but the last 2 years haven't been a bed of roses either. His inability to push "any" button during this trading deadline has further tarnished my view of him.

    I still love the Pacers and I absolutely enjoyed the game last night. The guys that are on the floor give it everything they have!!
    But is this really fair? You will set the franchise back for years if you make a bad trade just for the sake of movement. Plus, it takes two to tango. If another team wants your best players for their crappy players, you can't do that. Two years is pretty fast to shut the door on someone trying to reshape a franchise.

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by Speed View Post
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    Is there a Colangelo around thats available?
    I've wondered the same thing. That's one of the few I would like to see here. However, he's getting old, but is one of the best. He is my favorite GM.

    Who? I don't know. We should just stick with Bird. No self respecting guy would really want this job now. We need to stick with Bird. Walsh is ready to leave. This NY rumor has been going on for awhile.
    Last edited by Noodle; 03-18-2008 at 10:56 AM.

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    NaptownSeth is all feel Naptown_Seth's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    I agree with Redd and Twes at the same time. To me Bird is not a non-playing leader, he doesn't come across as a guy that is setting the tone.

    That was my rant with the whole "Rick let them run wild a bit" angle Bird was going with, as if it ultimately wasn't his mess and as if he didn't have power to set any and everyone straight at any time.

    For all the talk about the team's identity and how it got like that, don't you think it's management that ultimately sets the tone? Not in what they think but in how they establish what will and won't be tolerated as well as what "not tolerated" means exactly.

    We all know about GM's undermining the coach for example. That's what I mean by a GM setting the tone. Which players come in, how the team interacts with them from the agent, the coach, the trainer, the PR department, the works, this is what sets that tone.

    So if JO complains that he felt like Bird was uninvolved with the team because he was scouting in Europe during the Ron thing that is legit. JO could be "wrong", but the point is that it's a tone and a message. You need to make sure that these things are CLEAR and CORRECT in the player's minds.

    If a player is dumb, chippy, soft, a headcase, whatever, it's your job to figure out how to connect to them either directly or via another person if that's what it takes.

    Each guy has to feel like it's a professional situation and that there are clear standards.


    How much of what has come out of the Pacers the last 4-5 years suggests that this has been the case?


    Let's stop acting like the old Pacers were all angels. Reggie was "Hollywood" when he started and loved being brash (never really completely stopped). Rik was always injured like JO. Dale and Tony had some very rough encounters with other players. Detlef got tossed from a playoff game for fighting with Ewing. Jax had his shimmy. Gold Club was in the background at the very least.

    It wasn't that these guys just automatically brought some all-American image with them. There was a standard and tone being set as well, which they then adopted and helped perpetuate.


    Bird talks a lot but is that message being brought across consistantly by his actions as GM? Frankly carping to the press seems counter to an idea of professionalism, at least with stuff like "we got players that aren't leaders".

    Do you want your boss to talk to you or to announce your failings at the company party instead? Which sets the tone of proper expectations and professionalism?

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    Administrator Unclebuck's Avatar
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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by avoidingtheclowns View Post
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    why? well...

    mutombo
    mckie
    kenny thomas
    snow
    buckner
    skinner
    dalembert
    kukoc
    van horn
    glenn robinson
    cwebb

    he signed and traded for these guys -- KILLED cap space until this summer -- all during iverson's prime. then he ended up getting jobbed in the iverson trade. all of this without chronic injuries to iverson (like with JO) or a major franchise-crippling, PR nightmare castastro***** (like, say, the brawl).

    essentially what i'm trying to say is that were billy king still in philly he'd probably sign david harrison for the full MLE.

    did he draft well? drafted iggy in the lotto, found dalembert in the late 1st, traded for korver... sure. very nice pickups. isiah drafts well too (camby, tmac, damon stoudamire, lee). isiah also makes ridiculous trades and signings... would he be on your short list too?
    Weren't all except the last three larry brown's deals.

    Plus you seem to discounting the current team that he built

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    A sure fire way to undermine your franchise: Have a GM (Bird) and a Franchise Player (JO) who can't stand each other.

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    Default Re: Pacers' Bird unsure of his future

    Quote Originally Posted by indyblue47 View Post
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    Maybe it's not entirely all his fault, as DW just (supposedly) turned over the reins to him 2 years ago, but the last 2 years haven't been a bed of roses either. His inability to push "any" button during this trading deadline has further tarnished my view of him.
    Ummm, no he didn't.

    This was supposed to be the first year that Bird was in full control. Everyone gave credit to LB for the GS trade, and then this year we find out that Donnie was the lead man for it.

    That's still a big part of the problem though, who really is in charge? Donnie? Bird? Or both?

    But either way, this is supposed to be the first year that Larry was in the driver's seat.

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