There are two types of quarterbacks in the league: Those whom over time, the league figures out ... and those who figure out the league.
Extreme positions exist on everything; their mere existence isn't proof of their commonality.
"Every time I pitched it was like throwing gasoline on a fire. Pkkw! Pkkw! Pkkw! Pkkw!"
- Ebby Calvin "Nuke" LaLoosh
Well in basketball, you really never know until the season unfolds.
At the end of it all, only one team for each conference will compete for the championship. While there were sure winners like Miami, there were surprises like Dallas two seasons ago. So for the Pacers, they just need to continue going up as their core is one of the strongest as a collective group.
The OP demonstates that he know little about sports or NBA basketball.
Why did I even look at this thread?
The only fair way to judge Donnie Walsh is by his entire body of work with the franchise.
Some people are to fast to blame him for what occurred after 2000 & some are to fast to forget that his tenure with Indiana did not start with the 93/94 season.
He was not given the name Donnie Do Nothing in 1999 he was given that name in 1989.
I have said all along he is a good manager (whatever title you want to give him) of basketball talent, however whenever you are dealing with Walsh Warriors that is never good enough. Every move he made is the not only the only move that was available at the time it was the exact perfect thing to do.
It's very hard to combat that type of thinking.
It's already happening again in this day and age. Look at how many people are running to defend this off season by saying what was done were the only options available and even though they were the only options available they were great if not perfect decisions.
Now mind you just like BillS is pointing out that not everybody is content to be competitive I'm stating that not everybody is of the mind set of Walsh Warriors but just like those who are content these types also exists.
I will counter all of the "look who Donnie traded for" and state that we need to go look at his trade record from 1985 to 1994 and then again from 1994 to 2000 and then 2000 till Larry took over. I think when you look at it like that you will see there were times he was very active to times where you wondered if we weren't just on cruise control.
[QUOTE=mattie;1493879]Quick note- I don’t intend this as a negative outlook on the Pacers future.
Your title certainly does. I think people who complain about the front office should at least give examples of things we could have done and didn't. The people pissed because the team was never as bad as they would hope shouldn't bother responding,I have no respect for their viewpoint. We offered Nash a contract and I really don't want the team adding old players. This was never a short term project.
Last edited by spazzxb; 08-16-2012 at 04:04 PM.
While I'm really enjoying the discussion in this thread, I do disagree with some of your logic, mattie.
You cite the 97-98 Pacers as an example of a Pacers team that could legitimately compete for a title. While that team was no doubt one of the best this franchise has ever assembled, it was only good for the 5th best record in the league that year.
Here's a quick look around the league in 1998:
-MJ and Pippen making one final run in Chicago
-Stockton & Malone leading a dominant Utah team
-New York - while not as good as years past - still had Ewing averaging a double-double, Allan Houston, LJ, Oakley, and Starks and upset a very good Miami team in the playoffs
-Gary Payton, Schrempf, and Vin Baker (yes, Vin Baker was pretty good once upon a time) leading Seattle to 61 wins
-A Shaq-led Lakers team that was only a Kobe away from dominating the next 5 years, but still good enough to win 61 games
Now, let's re-examine the league in 2012:
-Miami finally clicked, has the best player in the world coming off one of the best years a basketball player has ever had. Add Ray Allen to the mix, no reason not to expect them not to dominate.
-OKC is young, but loaded with talent. A trip to the NBA Finals and Olympics (for most of the core players anyway) should serve as a great learning experience. Will only get better.
-LAL will start Nash, Kobe, Artest, Gasol, and Howard. Granted, they're on the older side, but it is still one of the most impressive lineups in recent NBA history.
-Boston returns a core that is no doubt old, but very experienced, well-coached, and hungry. Let's not forget how close they came to beating Miami this year.
I just fail to see how 2012 is a markedly different environment than 1998. The team that pushed Jordan to Game 7 in 98 and finally reached the Finals in 2000 had largely the same core for 6 or 7 years. The 2000 Finals represented the proverbial ceiling for that group. You can argue the 98 team was better and may find a sympathetic ear or two. But what can't be argued is they lost to two better teams. Jordan and the Bulls and the beginning of a Lakers dynasty.
If getting to a couple Conference Finals and an NBA Finals in the 90s is considered competing for a championship, the same standard must be applied today. Looking around the league - especially the Eastern Conference - I have every reason to believe the Pacers can compete for a championship just like those 90s teams.
Doesn't this offseason make some more sense though if we operate under the theory that Donnie is just keeping shop for a year while Bird rests?
Anyway, I'm firmly somewhere in the middle on this. I think we can compete for a title, but I definitely don't think we can win one. To me competing means, could you see a way where your team finds itself in the conference finals, my answer is yes, but right now I don't really see a way where we would find a way to win the whole damn thing unless Paul makes a gigantic leap offensively. I'm not content with just competing forever, but I do think it is a good spot to be heading into this particular season, I would have never even believed I would have those kind of hopes last summer.
That being said Gay vs. Granger is a lot closer than most people would say. Randolph vs. West this year was pretty much a wash. I'll take Roy over Marc Gasol....Maybe there's not a huge difference, but I would take our rosters over Memphis. To act like the rest of their starting 5 is clearly superior to ours other than shooting guard is just not true IMO
And I don't consider myself a Walsh Warrior... Like most human beings he has had some success and some failings... But whoever is sitting in our head chair will get support from me until I find out for certain that they had a chance to do something and completely wiffed... And I have seen absolutely no valid proof of the shortcomings the dark siders claim go on in our front office... Other than the outcome that they wanted didn't happen... They have no idea what lead us to that outcome... They just make assumptions that the FO made no attempt to do anything...
Nothing in life worth having comes easy.
Nothing in life worth having comes easy.
We all know for Vnzla stands by now, until we have a lineup of Chris Paul, Monta Ellis (), Lebron, Kevin Love, and Dwight Howard, we are just not trying hard enough.
I don't agree with him, but I definitely understand where he's coming from on that end. I've accepted by now that for the Pacers to win a title they either need to have a miracle drop into their laps on draft day or they need to follow the Pistons plan which remember did include fleecing someone at the trade deadline for an all star type player (Rasheed), so right now I think we're one move like that away from competing for a title in that route. That's just not the route Vnzla would like to use.
"I like our group of people," Ainge told USA Today. "I'm trying to teach them about basketball, and they're trying to teach me about analytics."
I'm not 100% sure if this is what you meant, but this was the article that came to mind. It chronicles Nash's path to the Lakers and how he wasn't going to realistically think of any team that took him too far away from his twin daughters.
You're absolutely killing me. You are sucking the air right out of my room. You see, I'm 60 years old and I have very few remaining on my bucket list. One of the most important for me, one that I have absolutely no control over, is seeing the Pacers win an NBA championship before my days are done.
First off, you've given us an extremely well written position. I've understood your position for some time, but this serves very well to summarize your viewpoint. However, I don't agree with the lack of faith that you have in TPTB.
The reason I say this is that I can understand and can certainly accept their rationale for making the moves that they have made this summer. I could easily join in with those that feel we may have overpaid for some of the deals that were made, but I really don't take exception with the personnel retained or acquired, or the reasoning behind it.
I break a game into about 3 components. Game initiation/start, mid-game (perhaps further broken into Q2 and Q3/early Q4) and end-game situations.
Quite frankly, once the move was change was made to start Hill (with Collison's injury) and to stick with him (even after Collison returned), I don't believe that anyone can reasonably argue the point that our starting lineup was not capable of playing with anyone in the league in game start (Q1) situations. I think the scoreboard has proven that point.
Our early leads were often lost in late Q1/early Q2 when there were usually 3-4 bench players on the floor along with one starter. It was then not uncommon to see the starting unit either rebuild a lead or play back to even by halftime once they were re-inserted into the game in Q2. Starting the second half, our starters sometimes built leads or held their own.
The only time that I can sometimes take exception to the performance of our starters would be in end-game situations (last 5 minutes) against the best of the best. The better teams have more talented star players that focus better in end-game situations. And, I cannot disagree when the top players of the best teams are playing more focused, they more often than not can get the better of even our starting players.
So, I see the challenges for the Pacers being the strength of their bench and what they provide as a unit when the starters are out of the game in late Q1 and late Q3 situations, and the performance of even our best players in late game situations.
I honestly believe that that TPTB believes that they have addressed both needs. Is it unreasonable to believe that the overall performance of this team would be improved by improving the talent and capabilities of the bench players that come onto the floor in late Q1/late Q3? Is it really unreasonable to believe that Hibbert and George will continue to improve or that West will perform better as he further heals, thereby perhaps providing even more cushion to help the subs maintain leads that our starters have built? I believe this is where the TPTB took a position as one solution and that I really can't argue against the position that they took. It is reasonable and was probably the easiest solution to execute.
I believe that by retaining our starters, we have a unit that will perform no worse than they performed late last year. And, if George, Hibbert and West do improve, the starting unit building comfortable Q1 leads will be the norm. A better bench that can maintain those leads will eventually lead to opponents starters having to play more minutes in an attempt to overcome those leads.
That takes us to late-game situations. Hopefully the extra minutes players by the opponents starters will help our starters in their attempt to perform better in the final minutes of games against the leagues best players. If not, then I believe that definite needs will reveal themselves to TPTB. You could be very correct in that the Pacers will need to replace West with a player that is better suited to defend the paint in late game situations. If that is the case, then I hope by then that someone else becomes much better at providing scoring in end game situations, because right now I believe that West is the most consistent scorer we have in those situations.
As for our starting unit being as is for 5 years, I just don't see it. Even with a top-performing team like we had in the late 90s, that has never been the case. I don't see it now. First off, West will be a free agent and I don't see the Pacers paying him the type of money that it might take to retain him, which is probably about what he is making now. The only way would be if West will give us a break due to an enjoyment he has in playing with this team or due to some new-found loyalty he might have. But playing him his present dollars would only set us up for team salary difficulties when have to renegotiate with Granger and George.
I believe that this season is put up or shut up time for Paul George. If he does not elevate his game quite a bit this year, the Pacers might even go a different direction at SG. Who knows.... maybe by acquiring a new PG and moving Hill to SG. But at any rate, if tinkering with the roster through rebuilding the bench is not the answer, I don't believe TPTB will hesitate for a moment to look at attempting to bring in a new starter or two.
Oddly enough, I really agree with you. If Lebron blows out his knee halfway through the upcoming season, I think the Pacers would have a definite shot of making it to the final, and a slim chance of beating any team from the West (to me the Heat are by far the best team, followed by LA, then trailing a ways behind SA and Okc.)
Does this mean that I have to not just cheer for the Pacers, but for someone (Delonte West for examplem, on Wednesday January 2, 2013) to take out Lebron's knee? Feel kind of bad hoping it happens. Not so bad if it happened to Wade, but I think Miami could still beat us without Wade if they had James...