Results 1 to 10 of 10

Thread: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

  1. #1

    Default Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth
    -Lee Jenkins

    Story Highlights
    -Danny Granger is an incredible scorer, but he's yet to lead Indy to the playoffs
    -The Pacers are now 9-8, off to their best start since Granger's rookie season
    -Granger has taken cues from Ron Artest, Chauncey Billups on how to lead a team


    http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/201...ers/index.html

    Danny Granger scored 5,919 points in the past four years, more than Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, Brandon Roy and Paul Pierce. He became an All-Star, a member of Team USA and a top-10 pick in fantasy drafts. But every April, Granger went home, to dodge playoff games on TV so he wouldn't be reminded of what he was missing. All those points were making him famous, but they weren't getting him where he yearned to go.

    "I once scored 26 points per game and we still missed the playoffs," Granger said. "It makes you ask yourself, 'If that isn't enough, what do I have to do?' "
    Granger could have easily blamed the Pacers for not surrounding him with more talent, but he saw Kobe Bryant carry an undermanned Lakers team to the playoffs in 2007, LeBron James do the same for the Cavaliers in 2008 and Dwyane Wade with the Heat in 2009. They would obviously need reinforcements to contend for championships, but genuine superstars can usually reach the postseason even when shorthanded. Two years ago, no one scored more points than Granger and still missed the playoffs. Last year, only Monta Ellis did.

    "To be one of those really good players you can't just score 26 a game," Granger said. "You have to keep the other team's top guy from scoring, too."
    The Pacers are 9-8, off to their best start in five years, when Granger was a rookie and Ron Artest was still on the roster. Back then, Artest would keep Granger in the gym after practice and trade body blows during games of one-on-one. Granger was an Artest protégé, a budding stopper, but then Artest left and the roster was gutted and the Pacers needed someone to put the ball in the basket. The Lone Granger was born, a transcendent gunner who shot better than 40 percent from three-point range but averaged fewer than six rebounds and could not always defend other elite wings.

    "As my scoring picked up, I became more attuned to offense," Granger said. "And, of course, it's harder to keep up the defensive intensity when you're losing."

    For four straight years the Pacers failed to crack 40 wins, finishing last season with 32, the fewest in two decades. Team president Larry Bird told the Indianapolis Star that Granger needed to become more consistent on defense, a point illustrated by Team USA coach Mike Krzyzewski, who buried Granger on the bench behind Durant, Andre Iguodala and Rudy Gay at the World Championship last summer in Turkey.

    "If your best player is not committed to what you're doing defensively, you're not going to have a good team," said Pacers coach Jim O'Brien.
    Granger spent much of his down time at the World Championship observing point guard Chauncey Billups -- how he prepared for games, motivated teammates, addressed coaches and somehow knew what everyone was doing on the floor and off. At 27, Granger recognizes it is time to grow into a leadership role, and while he is not as outspoken as Billups, he can still set a valuable example.

    "Danny is not a dominant personality," O'Brien said. "But he has decided he wants to be our best defensive player and there's really no better leadership than that."

    Granger came into this season with the goal of guarding the opposition's top scorer every night, making the All-Defensive team and going somewhere other than home in April. He ordered cut-ups of Artest to remind himself of the determination required. The Pacers attribute their turnaround to the development of center Roy Hibbert, the acquisition of point guard Darren Collison and Granger's renewed commitment to defense, which has become contagious. The Pacers rank second in the NBA in opposing field-goal percentage, a statistic so important to O'Brien that he provides daily updates to the team on where they stand.

    "The message has always been, 'If you're good enough to get in the top 10 in field goal defense, you're probably going to get in the playoffs,' " O'Brien said.

    He has already used Granger on Durant, James, Bryant and Joe Johnson. Two weeks ago, when Clippers guard Eric Gordon scored 11 points in the first quarter against the Pacers, O'Brien switched Granger on him, and Gordon finished with 19 points on 5-of-17 shooting.
    "He always had the ability to do this," O'Brien said. "He just wasn't as focused on it."

    The effort Granger is expending on defense may be hurting his production slightly. His scoring is down nearly two points per game, but his assists, field-goal percentage and three-point percentage are all up. Most important, the Pacers have won road games against the Lakers and Heat, and on Tuesday night in Sacramento, Granger scored 37 points with seven rebounds and two steals while fighting off the flu.

    "In other years we were hoping to win," he said. "This year we can play with the best, beat the best. There is no reason we should not make the playoffs."
    Granger credits Bird and general manager David Morway, who warned him long ago that he would have to wait through an extended rebuilding process, but promised a payoff at the end. They upheld their side of the agreement, trading for Collison, sticking with Hibbert, giving the Lone Granger some company. He still leads the Pacers in scoring, and probably will for the foreseeable future, but he now has the opportunity to lead them in other ways as well.






    Basically just confirms what we thought.

  2. The Following 12 Users Say Thank You to Pacerfan For This Useful Post:

    + Show/Hide list of the thanked


  3. #2
    .
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Posts
    52,583

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    I'm really proud of the way Danny's stepped it up (big time) on defense.

  4. #3
    The Dude Abides MrSparko's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Fort Wayne, Indiana
    Age
    24
    Posts
    1,371

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    Clearly Ben Gordon is JUST as good as Granger...
    Report: 82% Of Wiseguys Think They're Real Funny

  5. The Following 6 Users Say Thank You to MrSparko For This Useful Post:


  6. #4
    Administrator Peck's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    12,641

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    Actually reading things like this make me sick when I think about all of the negative things that have been said about Danny over the past couple of seasons (myself included btw). This guy has been nothing but a pro's pro and I am very proud to call him a Pacer.


    Basketball isn't played with computers, spreadsheets, and simulations. ChicagoJ 4/21/13

  7. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to Peck For This Useful Post:


  8. #5
    crazy shinaniganz BringJackBack's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Location
    Indianapolis
    Posts
    7,351

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    If Danny plays defense all season long at the clip that he has been playing defense at, than he is going to be the #1 difference in this team OVER Roy improving and Collison being here. He has great defensive ability and after it seemed like he was going to be a one dimensional player for the most part, he has completely changed and now he plays like someone who is bloodthirsty for some Ws.

    Pretty happy to be a Pacers fan nowadays. Get him another All-Star.

  9. #6
    Member owl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    4,253

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    BJB said..."If Danny plays defense all season long at the clip that he has been playing defense at, than he is going to be the #1 difference in this team OVER Roy improving and Collison being here. "


    I believe this to be true. If Danny continues this effort throughout the season they WILL make the playoffs. If he reverts to old Danny they can go ahead and plan on being
    at home watching the playoffs on TV. Nothing else matters as much.
    {o,o}
    |)__)
    -"-"-

  10. #7
    Member owl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    4,253

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    Quote Originally Posted by Peck View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    Actually reading things like this make me sick when I think about all of the negative things that have been said about Danny over the past couple of seasons (myself included btw). This guy has been nothing but a pro's pro and I am very proud to call him a Pacer.
    It is funny how preceptions can change. It was not that long ago Danny was being called the best player the Pacers have ever had, better than Reggie even. Then we have fans
    calling for Danny to be traded for peanuts. I know I have been disappointed in Danny's defense for awhile and frankly defense is what is going to make him a great player and take the team someplace.
    The offense will come and I believe in a more efficient mode more in line with what Reggie
    did night in and night out.
    {o,o}
    |)__)
    -"-"-

  11. #8
    Member owl's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2004
    Posts
    4,253

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    Man, what the defense could be if we had a healthy Foster for 15-20 mintues a game.
    {o,o}
    |)__)
    -"-"-

  12. #9
    Shooting for the Moon Day-V's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    SoBro
    Age
    26
    Posts
    4,307
    Mood

    Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo Sports Logo

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    Quote Originally Posted by BringJackBack View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    If Danny plays defense all season long at the clip that he has been playing defense at, than he is going to be the #1 difference in this team OVER Roy improving and Collison being here.
    Normally, I'd agree, but I still say the biggest difference is that Troy Murphy is no longer on this team.


    Danny's improvement is a VERY close 2nd, though!

  13. #10

    Default Re: Forget personal stats: Granger has sights set on Pacers playoff berth

    Isn't there another article posted where JOB rolls his eyes and says the team is finally winning because they are sick of losing and giving 100% effort the whole game now? Granger says in this article that it was too hard to give 100% effort when you are losing.

    Was JOB rolling his eyes at Granger?

Similar Threads

  1. The Official Pacers Digest F.A.Q. Thread
    By Hicks in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 81
    Last Post: 09-02-2013, 05:30 PM
  2. Pacers-Celtics Matchups (IndyStar)
    By ChicagoJ in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 04-28-2010, 09:36 AM
  3. Replies: 6
    Last Post: 02-21-2010, 09:41 AM
  4. New Granger article on CNNSI
    By JBones19 in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 0
    Last Post: 11-20-2008, 09:54 AM
  5. Granger reminds Magic of the past
    By Will Galen in forum Indiana Pacers
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 12-10-2007, 12:56 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •