I think it is important to ask this question right now. Reason being is I fear that many of you are forgetting why the pacers won 61 games. And no this is not all about Artest
From everything I have read in this forum since the season ended, I have gleemed this:
Our starting shooting guard refuses to shoot and is a huge defensive liability.
Our starting center can't shoot and offers nothing offensively. He gets pushed around and can only guard certain players.
Our starting point guard has improved his defense and has gotten better, but still has trouble shooting even though he is left wide open
Our 6th man never passsed the ball and took way too many turn around jumpers.
Fred Jones is too small to play the shooting guard and still can't shoot.
AJ can't pass, can't handle the ball and certainly cannot run an offense.
Pollard is just horrible.
Bender is injured.
Croshere is inconsistant
And now in the past few days we hear that Artest's defense is enhanced by the coaches/defensive system. He is an offensive liability, a ball hog who dribbles too much and tries to do too much.
So I guess the Pacers won for two reasons. Great coaching and J.O.
If I have not watched every game this past season (except the Cavs game) and if I just went by the things I have read in this forum I would say that J.O must be the best player in the league and the Pacers have the best coaching staff in the NBA, or maybe many of you believe the pacers won 61 games with smoke and mirrors.
Winning 61 games is not easy