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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Helsinki, Finland

    Cool Player subtractions for the next season

    Let's take a close look on roster changes.

    Our beloved Pacers ended this unsuccessful NBA-season for their part with the following 15 players on their roster.

    Jamaal Tinsley
    Flip Murray
    Travis Diener
    Andre Owens
    Kareem Rush
    Marquis Daniels
    Stephen Graham
    Danny Granger
    Mike Dunleavy
    Shawne Williams
    Jermaine O'Neal
    Troy Murphy
    Ike Diogu
    Jeff Foster
    David Harrison

    I think now it's time to ponder which players should and/or will return to the team for the start of the next season. Here is my conclusion for this matter based on a short yet impartial player-by-player positional evaluation.


    Tinsley has been inactive quite often because of repetitive injuries and has become more and more unpopular among fans. He is pretty productive, but we cannot afford to let him mainly not be able to play. We absolutely need a reliable PG as a starter. So he should be traded.
    Murray was a starter lately but didn't finish games often. He is a free agent and should be used as a combo guard. He could return because he can score and thus clearly carry some scoring load as a backup SG. However, he needs to be a bigger force defensively than he has been.
    Diener shouldn't start games. He is too small and unathletic to guard opponent's starter, but he has some nice basketball IQ, he doesn't turn the ball over too often and can push the tempo up when needed offensively. He could well be used as a trade bait or as a sweetener.
    Owens didn't earn much minutes late in the season. He obviously doesn't have quality playmaking skills, but he seems to be a capable perimeter defender, which is useful in our team. He is a free agent and in case his price tag ain't too high we could re-sign him as a filler PG.

    Real-life prediction:
    Tinsley, Murray and Owens won't be back, Diener will be back


    Rush had his ups and downs during the season. Surely, he wasn't as consistant as we wished. He is a decent defender, but as a distance shooter too one-dimensional offensively. He is a free agent and likely will be offered such a deal elsewhere that we have no sense to match.
    Daniels has been a disappointment to some degree. He simply ain't as productive as we hoped. Also, he has some off-the-court baggage.
    He can play multiple positions and create scoring chances with his penetration, so he has value. Trading him would be best thing to do.
    Graham didn't play much this season. He is a free agent with no special strengths. Typically he just got some garbage time, or DNP-CD, under his belt and even though he was relatively efficient, all indicates that he ain't going to be in our plans for upcoming season.

    Real-life prediction:
    Rush and Graham won't be back, Daniels will be back


    Granger certainly established himself as one of our best players this season, if not the best. He is developing perhaps towards stardom. He definately has considerable value in the league, especially with his present contract, but we need to keep him and give him an extension.
    Dunleavy was considered as one of the most improved players this season. He was very important for us offensively. Trading him should be investigated carefully, because his salary is high and his value is now surely at its highest. Nonetheless, he should be keeped as yet.
    Williams is a project and accordingly he has been given some time to mature and develop. However, he seems sort of jammed in this SF position. Add to this his inconsistancy and some off-the-court issues
    and figure that he should now be traded maybe for a good draft pick.

    Real-life prediction:
    Granger, Dunleavy and Williams will all be back


    O'Neal was once again injured for the large part of the season. He proved to be defensive stopper in the paint, but it seems that he has lost a step in the offensive end. His salary is huge and we could invest that money better by trading him and getting a few pieces in return.
    Murphy offered some inside-outside scoring and rebounded decently while nicely improved during the season. He struggles defensively but he can shoot the ball. Because he has relatively such a high salary, he could well be traded, but probably is still worth using as a backup.
    Diogu didn't get meaningful minutes regularly in spite of O'Neal's absense. He is considered as somewhat undersized for his position. He could score inside but clearly ain't a good team defender. He has no real use and thus should be used as a trade bait or as a sweetener.

    Real-life prediction:
    Diogu won't be back, O'Neal and Murphy will be back


    Foster is a valuable hustle player with limited scoring skills. He does
    continuously a lot of dirty work on the court. Every team simply needs that kind of willingness. He is also a very dependable postup defender and rebounder. He is still very useful, mainly as a backup C though.
    Harrison was practically our lone true C, but he didn't respond to that well enough. He wasn't such a force on both ends of the floor that we sure would have liked him to be. He also had a serious disciplinary problem. He is a restricted free agent and ain't considered to return.

    Real-life prediction:
    Harrison won't be back, Foster will be back

    This is how Pacers' depth chart should present itself, in my opinion (starter/backup/filler) after these suggested changes are made.

    PG: -/-/Owens

    SG: -/Murray/-

    SF: Granger/Dunleavy/-

    PF: -/Murphy/-

    C: -/Foster/-

    Now I will try to suggest what type of players we are going to need to fill in holes in this depth chart in order to get a full roster.

    1. First and foremost we need a star-caliber PG. No matter how. Not necessarily a superstar, but a very good offensive-defensive weapon, to say the least. He mustorchestrate our team and be good at that.
    - We would also like to have an offensive-minded backup PG. Owens could serve as a filler. I don't mind bringing back Diener as a backup PG, but then he shouldn't play nearly as many minutes as this season.

    2. Defensive-minded SG, please. He should be our best perimeter defender, maybe capable to defend multiple positions. We don't need him to score much, just to stop opponent's best perimeter scorer.
    - Then Murray could be our backup SG. He could also operate some PG duties. Furthermore, we would use a filler for SG. He should be able to shoot the ball. Rush would do fine provided his price tag ain't too high.

    3. In case Williams will be traded, which I recommend, we could use a filler SF. Most likely he ain't going to play any significant minutes next season, so therefore his contract shouldn't be massive, nor his duties.
    - Dunleavy could actually play as our sixth man, compared to Ginobili of the Spurs, for example. Of course, Dunleavy will eventually play major minutes out of position, like this season, together with Granger.

    4. If O'Neal will be traded (most likely he is not going to opt out of his contract) we definately need a decent substitute for him. Preferably not even nearly as expensive. This sub should be able to defend well.
    - Surely Murphy could start but it's better to have him as an offensive-minded backup sharing big minutes as PF with a newcomer starter PF. We also would hire a filler. He will be a bench layer for the most part.

    5. In our system, a real inside presence would be very attractive. So we would love a dominator of the boards as starter C. We didn't have any this season with O'Neal sidelined. Use some big bucks to get this.
    - With offensive-minded starting C Foster would fit in nicely for us as a supplementary backup C. As a filler we would like to have a big body, maybe a project much like Harrison. A promising big C surely is useful.

    So, as I see it, we would indeed need pretty many new quality players in our team - perhaps as many as four new starters! But I must point out that we do have several ways to obtain them, naturally through trades, draft and free agency. To my understanding, by trading some of our assets presented above should all this revamping be possible.

    I guess it's also worth keeping in mind that we need to be open for any improvements of the team we can get. This means that anybody should be tradable if opportunity comes. Building a team is very multidimensional thing in its entirety. Making one change affects to many things, tiny as they may be. (This part was for Larry Bird, )

    There are two steps for us to get a competive team next season. Firstly, we must quickly get rid of all the bad or inappropriate parts, that is to say players that for some reason don't fit in to this team. Secondly, we just need to get the players necessary to accomplish this job. As simple as that. Here I have tried to address the first step.

    I would like you to take a stand for this topic. Please feel free to express your opinion. Thank you for your attention!

  2. #2
    Member CableKC's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
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    Default Re: Player subtractions for the next season

    Your real-life predictions don't match up with your suggested lineup. It should be:

    PG: -/Diener/-
    SG: -/Marquis/-
    SF: Granger/Dunleavy/Shawne
    PF: JONeal/Murphy/-
    C: -/Foster/-

    As for my realistic expectations, the only players that I think will be moved are Marquis and Ike. We're not going to resign Flip, Kareem and Harrison. I think that the primary core of players are still here....including Tinsley.

    Despite JO'Bs comments, I have very little confidence that Bird can pull out some deal that sends Tinsley away or worse....nets us a deal that worsens our financial situation simply cuz he wants him gone.

    In fact...I think that there is a greater chance that JONeal will be moved before Tinsley. I'm not saying that it's wise to do so....I'm just saying that teams would actually want a player like JONeal whereas there are no teams that would want Tinsley.
    Ash from Army of Darkness: Good...Bad...I'm the guy with the gun.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Helsinki, Finland

    Default Re: Player subtractions for the next season

    Your real-life predictions don't match up with your suggested lineup. It should be:

    PG: -/Diener/-
    SG: -/Marquis/-
    SF: Granger/Dunleavy/Shawne
    PF: JONeal/Murphy/-
    C: -/Foster/-
    Well, you see, that is simply because my suggested lineup is different than my real-life prediction!

    I partly agree with your expectations. JT and/or JO'N trades are obviously not easy thing to do - and no wonder why. Still, I'm sure there will be teams offseason looking and longing for assists JT could possibly produce for them.

    But I will claim that we would desperately need some new infusion, even new core players so to speak, in order to improve significantly. It ain't impossible.

    I believe that JO'N could pretty well stay in our team whereas JT probably couldn't. The reason is the famous baggage JT has, not to mention JO'B's comments that our PG situation needs to be re-addressed. Also, JO'N has kind of leadership abilities and status in our team that JT apparently hasn't.
    Last edited by FinPacers; 04-28-2008 at 07:29 PM. Reason: error

  4. #4
    Lurker of the Year Infinite MAN_force's Avatar
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    Jul 2007
    Fountain Square

    Default Re: Player subtractions for the next season

    I think Graham will be back. He is under contract next year (team option) but obrien specifically mentioned him as someone who would be playing in the summer league this year.
    "As a bearded man, i was very disappointed in Love. I am gathering other bearded men to discuss the status of Kevin Love's beard. I am motioning that it must be shaved."

    - ilive4sports

  5. #5
    100 Miles from the B count55's Avatar
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    Jun 2007

    Default Re: Player subtractions for the next season

    Quote Originally Posted by Infinite MAN_force View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    I think Graham will be back. He is under contract next year (team option) but obrien specifically mentioned him as someone who would be playing in the summer league this year.
    I agree...we're going to need cheap filler in the last three or four slots, and I think he's worth a flyer. After all, the devil you know...

  6. #6

    Default Re: Player subtractions for the next season

    We will debate this all summer I'm sure, but my outs are:

    PF: None

    C: Murphy

    SF: None

    PG: Tinsley, Owens, Murray*

    SG: Rush, Daniels

    Team Depth Chart:

    PF: JO/Ike

    SF: Dunleavy/Williams

    C: Foster/Harrison

    PG: ?/Diener

    SG: Granger/Graham

    • Why retain Harrison over Murphy? Two reasons: 1) Harrions will provide interior post-defense, and 2) he will continue to play underneath the rim and around the paint which is more than I can say for Murphy.
    • Why retain Ike? Give him one more year under JOB and a chance to work w/JO in the off-season. His injury held him back at first coming into last season then it was the need to stretch the defense then there was the need for interior defense. Ike was simply the odd man out each time, but give him a chance play himself into the rotation and if he doesn't pan out by the trade deadline, trade him.
    • *Retain Flip Murray only because he's a combo Guard who has more of an up-side than Daniels and he provides some veteran leadership among the reserves. Of course, one way to resolve that is to bring Dunleavy off the bench yet give him the same amount of minutes he had as a starter.

  7. #7
    Banned Jonathan's Avatar
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    Feb 2008

    Default Re: Player subtractions for the next season

    Several Pacer Fan's want to get rid of Tinsley; but what team wants him unless you unload a blockbuster deal ie 8 Player Trade. Teams would be willing to take the expiring contracts of Foster & Q6. They might also covet IKE or even our first round pick; but the only way the deal gets done is parting with one of three Dunleavy/Granger/S Williams.
    Try to work out a deal involving Murphy & Tinsley? Good Luck.

  8. #8
    NaptownSeth is all feel Naptown_Seth's Avatar
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    Jul 2006
    Downtown baby

    Default Re: Player subtractions for the next season

    IMF - I also agree on Graham. That wasn't a slip up by JOB. Now of course SG might play his way out of town ala Brewer but given the need to rework things I think letting him fill one of the backup/roster fodder roles makes more sense than resigning other non-impact guys.

    We looked at Rush and Ike and Owens. Not enought showed up to warrant further investiment.

    Tins is done because they've hit the point where they don't care about the hit. Some other team has a guy that doesn't want to be there and they'll make the swap to get this non-essential player.

    Tins will then have a modest run with the new team until he gets frustrated/disinterested there too. Who cares. He's not the PG of the future and he's just not about to become more tradable either.

    Going into last year he had more value IF he worked out, so it made the gamble worth it. More so considering that JOB had come on board and was promising a new style of play.

    This year Tins presents no value as either a trade piece nor a potential player (ie, if healthy, etc). The only thing you don't want to do is make him cost even more by outright cutting him.

    This is not motivated by personal dislike on my part. I'm neutral on that front. I'm just looking at the signals they've given and the praticality of moving forward. JO still makes sense to keep, Tins does not.

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