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Thread: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

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    Chairman of the Boards 90'sNBARocked's Avatar
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    Default Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    http://www.sheridanhoops.com/2014/07...window-closed/

    Have the Indiana Pacers already gone as far as they can go with this roster?

    Itís a question overlooked with all the big moves being made this offseason in the Eastern Conference, and the Central Division in particular. A quick synopsis, for those who watched the World Cup and forgot about basketball since the Finals ended:

    Cleveland signed LeBron James, drafted Andrew Wiggins and could trade Wiggins to Minnesota in a blockbuster deal for Kevin Love.
    Chicago got rid of Carlos Boozer and added Pau Gasol, prized European Nikola Mirotic and draft pick Doug McDermott. They could trade trade for Love, too, as SheridanHoops reported.
    Indiana failed to re-sign Lance Stephenson and replaced him with Rodney Stuckey and CJ Miles.
    The moves made this summer objectively makes the Pacers the third best team in their own division.

    Paul George has proven he can be a superstar player in flashes, but Stephenson provided really strong wing production at both ends and was consistent when Roy Hibbert was the exact antithesis of consistent since the All-Star break. David West is a really good player and George Hill is a good defender, but it just seems like the Eastern Conference is passing Indiana by.

    In a league where Avery Bradley and Channing Frye make $8 million per season, the Pacersí best offer to Stephenson was reportedly five years and $44 million, just a shade under $9M per season. Charlotte got him for a relative bargain at 3/27, while Indiana could be saddled with regrets for a long time for not upping the ante for last seasonís triple-doubles leader.

    Replacing Stephenson? Scoring guard Stuckey, a downright laughable downgrade who doesnít mesh at all with what Indiana does best: rock solid defense and enough efficient scoring to get victories.

    Take a look at this comparison between the two players, and youíll see how the Pacers got drastically worse at the shooting guard position:

    2013-2014 Stats FG % 3 FG % Points Rebounds Assists PER True Shooting eFG % TO % Usage Rate O Rtg D Rtg Net Rtg WS WS/48
    Stephenson 49.1 35.2 13.8 7.2 4.6 14.7 56.4 54 18 19.4 106 101 5 7.4 0.13
    Stuckey 43.6 27.3 13.9 2.3 2.1 14 51.6 45 11.3 24.3 105 113 -8 2.2 0.053
    DET_Stuckey_RodneyStuckey is older, started just five games for the awful Pistons last year and man was he inefficient. His field goal percentage was more than five percentage points worse than Stephensonís, and his percentage from three was brutal for a Pacers team that already lacks in that department.

    The scoring is misleading, but the other statistics shine a light on the playersí differences. Stephenson averaged nearly five more rebounds and 2.5 more assists per game than Stuckey did last season. Stephensonís net rating per 100 possessions last season was 13 (thirteen!) points better than Stuckeyís.

    The Pacers pride themselves on defense, and Stephenson gave up 12 fewer points per 100 possessions than Stuckey last season and had more than five more win shares than his replacement. Indiana was first in the NBA in defensive rating last year and second in points allowed per game. Will they be able to keep that up with Stephenson no longer on the club?

    Lance Stephenson and LeBron JamesAmong five-man lineups that logged at least 30 minutes for the Pacers last season, Stephenson appeared in the top three and five of the top eight lineups in terms of point differential per 100 possessions. And they replaced him with an average to below average player in Stuckey.

    This kind of move is made by a team whose window of opportunity has slammed shut.

    Paul George is one of the top five two-way players in the NBA, but now teams can focus on him even more without a viable threat on both ends like Stephenson on the wing alongside him.

    George Hill averaged just 3.5 assists per game last season for a team that ranked 27th in that category a season ago. With Stephensonís distribution no longer there, Indiana could be in deep trouble in that department.

    Indiana led the league in rebounding last season, but will David West and Roy Hibbert be able to sustain that without Stephensonís seven boards per game? Can Hibbert regain the form and consistency he once so prominently displayed?

    There are far more questions than answers for this Pacers team in Stephensonís absence just as Cleveland and Chicago greatly improved their roster.

    So have the Pacers peaked? Based on a multitude of factors, there are indeed many reasons to believe that the best days for this Indiana Pacers team are already behind them.
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    Member Jon Theodore's Avatar
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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    But what about addition by subtraction! Right
    *removed* Just keep politics and religion completely out of it, please.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    I still think Stuckey was signed to come off the bench, and CJ Miles will start.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    A much debated question here, but ultimately no one knows.

    Lance was a huge part of the system the Pacers ran, whether on offense or defense, and only the most unreasonable Lance hater would suggest that the Pacers aren't going to feel the impact of his loss.

    However, by necessity we'll have to install a new system that takes into account the new personnel, and the effectiveness of the system is obviously something that we can't know yet. In fact, several people on this board have been making arguments on how a different playing style can mitigate the loss of Lance, or even improve on the old system.

    I'm one of those who'd be happier if we had kept Lance, but he's gone and we just have to deal with it. We'll all just have to wait and see.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    What's your definition of a championship window? Some would say it was not yet really open if last year was the first "legitimate" year the Pacers were considered to be threats for the title.

    Real history shows that it actually takes a couple of years for a group to get settled in to have a consistent level. Would Lance staying have opened the window? Depends on which Lance played.
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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    2013-2014 Stats FG% 3FG% Points Rebounds Assists PER TS% eFG% TO% Usage Rate ORtg DRtg NetRtg WS WS/48
    CJ Miles 43.5 39.3 9.9 2.0 1.0 16.0 56.9 53.7 9.1 22.0 111 107 4 2.5 0.122
    Stephenson 49.1 35.2 13.8 7.2 4.6 14.7 56.4 54 18 19.4 106 101 5 7.4 0.13
    Stuckey 43.6 27.3 13.9 2.3 2.1 14 51.6 45 11.3 24.3 105 113 -8 2.2 0.053


    I noticed Sheridan left out CJ, which will more than likely be the starting SG. I wonder why that is? Probably undercuts his point a bit, considering the differences in advanced stats between Lance/CJ are pretty close. Rebounds/assists really the only two categories that will need to be filled by the group.

    EDIT: I wish it wouldn't screw up the formatting. I tried making it easier to read.
    ďJust because you're offended, doesn't mean you're right.Ē ― Ricky Gervais.

    What if someone from a school of business or management school were to ask, How did you do this? How did you get the Pacers turned around? Is there a general approach you've taken that can be summarized?

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    I bet that 99% of Bulls, Heat, and Cavs fans are thrilled that the Pacers lost Stephenson and aren't buying the "addition by subtraction" spin coming mostly from fans in Marion County.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
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    2013-2014 Stats FG% 3FG% Points Rebounds Assists PER TS% eFG% TO% Usage Rate ORtg DRtg NetRtg WS WS/48
    CJ Miles 43.5 39.3 9.9 2.0 1.0 16.0 56.9 53.7 9.1 22.0 111 107 4 2.5 0.122
    Stephenson 49.1 35.2 13.8 7.2 4.6 14.7 56.4 54 18 19.4 106 101 5 7.4 0.13
    Stuckey 43.6 27.3 13.9 2.3 2.1 14 51.6 45 11.3 24.3 105 113 -8 2.2 0.053


    I noticed Sheridan left out CJ, which will more than likely be the starting SG. I wonder why that is? Probably undercuts his point a bit, considering the differences in advanced stats between Lance/CJ are pretty close. Rebounds/assists really the only two categories that will need to be filled by the group.

    EDIT: I wish it wouldn't screw up the formatting. I tried making it easier to read.
    The flaw in these 13-14 stats is that people are using them as if Lance will be 13-14 Lance again next season. His 12-13 stats were pretty useless the moment the 13-14 season started because he improved so rapidly last season. Given that he will only be 24 next season and has only played two years of heavy minutes, I'll bet that his stats again make a nice improvement. Older players like Stuckey and CJ OTOH have pretty much hit their peak at this point.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sollozzo View Post
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    The flaw in these 13-14 stats is that people are using them as if Lance will be 13-14 Lance again next season. His 12-13 stats were pretty useless the moment the 13-14 season started because he improved so rapidly last season. Given that he will only be 24 next season and has only played two years of heavy minutes, I'll bet that his stats again make a nice improvement. Older players like Stuckey and CJ OTOH have pretty much hit their peak at this point.
    So when Sheridan uses those stats to prove his point, and I use those stats to actually show his point isn't as large, I shouldn't use those stats. Okay.


    Whether or not Lance gets better really doesn't matter. Pacers need to replace what he did give them, not what he could give them in the future. Lance will give more in points, but I bet we'll see his effectiveness drop from it. The advanced stats are more about effectiveness, not his overall raw numbers.
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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
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    So when Sheridan uses those stats to prove his point, and I use those stats to actually show his point isn't as large, I shouldn't use those stats. Okay.


    Whether or not Lance gets better really doesn't matter. Pacers need to replace what he did give them, not what he could give them in the future. Lance will give more in points, but I bet we'll see his effectiveness drop from it.
    Just making a general point that 13-14 stats can become pretty useless quickly.

    We'll see what happens. Statistically, players like Evan Turner, DJ Augistin, and Gerald Green should have been nice additions. But it's not as easy as saying, "we lost player x who averaged this, but player y has similar averages, so we won't lose much of anything." We know that Stephenson succeeded well here, and despite his antics, he still had an opposing team willing to pay him more than we'll be paying for Miles and Stuckey combined next year. That has to say something.
    Last edited by Sollozzo; 07-25-2014 at 10:31 AM.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
    This quote is hidden because you are ignoring this member. Show Quote
    2013-2014 Stats FG% 3FG% Points Rebounds Assists PER TS% eFG% TO% Usage Rate ORtg DRtg NetRtg WS WS/48
    CJ Miles 43.5 39.3 9.9 2.0 1.0 16.0 56.9 53.7 9.1 22.0 111 107 4 2.5 0.122
    Stephenson 49.1 35.2 13.8 7.2 4.6 14.7 56.4 54 18 19.4 106 101 5 7.4 0.13
    Stuckey 43.6 27.3 13.9 2.3 2.1 14 51.6 45 11.3 24.3 105 113 -8 2.2 0.053


    I noticed Sheridan left out CJ, which will more than likely be the starting SG. I wonder why that is? Probably undercuts his point a bit, considering the differences in advanced stats between Lance/CJ are pretty close. Rebounds/assists really the only two categories that will need to be filled by the group.

    EDIT: I wish it wouldn't screw up the formatting. I tried making it easier to read.
    When posting stats like that put it within a [CODE] tag. It keeps the formatting, although it will take a bit of trial and error to get it right.

    Code:
    2013-2014 Stats FG% 3FG%  PPG  RPG APG PER  TS%  eFG%  TO% Usage ORtg DRtg NetRtg WS WS/48
    CJ Miles        43.5 39.3 9.9  2.0 1.0 16.0 56.9 53.7  9.1  22.0 111  107   4     2.5 0.122
    Stephenson      49.1 35.2 13.8 7.2 4.6 14.7 56.4 54    18   19.4 106  101   5     7.4 0.13
    Stuckey         43.6 27.3 13.9 2.3 2.1 14   51.6 45    11.3 24.3 105  113  -8     2.2 0.053

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sollozzo View Post
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    Just making a general point that 13-14 stats can become pretty useless quickly.

    We'll see what happens. Statistically, players like Evan Turner, DJ Augistin, and Gerald Green should have been nice additions. But it's not as easy as saying, "we lost player x who averaged this, but player y has similar averages, so we won't lose much of anything." We know that Stephenson succeeded well here, and despite his antics, he still had an opposing team willing to pay him more than we'll be paying for Miles and Stuckey next year. That has to say something.
    It's not as easy as saying "look these players don't compare so the Pacers will lose a lot" either. There's both sides of the coin here.
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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
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    It's not as easy as saying "look these players don't compare so the Pacers will lose a lot" either. There's both sides of the coin here.
    I agree, all we can do is wait and see. I've never been doom and gloom to the extent that I think that the Pacers will be bad next year. In fact, I still think that we'll be good next year and can make playoff noise again. I wanted Lance because I felt he could be a long term core piece with PG and hopefully a rejuvenated Hibbert. I think Stuckey is a bargain for the vet minimum and Miles is a nice player, but they don't have the core piece potential that Lance has. Bird will have his work cut out for him once West gets old/leaves.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    IMO the championship window opened during the 2013 ECF, started to close during the late season collapse in 2014 & slammed shut this offseason. Hope the team surprises me but this may be a league record for narrow "windowness".

    On the positive side this is still a rock solid NBA organization. Paul George is young, has the potential to be a top 5 player and is starting a long-term deal. If Bird & Company draft well and then play the Hibbert & West situations correctly over the next two years it is very possible the window opens up again very quickly.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    I'm hoping a move is still in the works for a starting pg. So I still have some hope for this team to improve. It is summer. I keep my fingers crossed.
    .

    Frank Vogel says "Killer instinct, start strong, build a lead and then step on their throats."

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Pacer Fan View Post
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    I'm hoping a move is still in the works for a starting pg. So I still have some hope for this team to improve. It is summer. I keep my fingers crossed.
    If we had contracts that weren't garbage, we could improve. However, pretty much all but 3 guys on the team are overpaid. They aren't going to improve and unload bad contracts.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    This is really tough to answer. Are we presently title contenders with the roster we have? Probably not. Now with a couple tweaks or lucky breaks I think we could be a contending team.

    I think we have a solid foundation from which to build, but that with our current roster we are not presently contenders. I am not sure if that answers the question, but it is what I feel about us now.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    As long as they have Paul George and decent players surrounding him, it hasn't.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Since86 View Post
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    Whether or not Lance gets better really doesn't matter. Pacers need to replace what he did give them, not what he could give them in the future.
    Disagree.

    Lance's potential is crazy. That is the main reason it was so important to keep him. Lance and PG could have eventually formed the best wing combo in the NBA, throw in a defensive monster like Hibbert in the mix and we are a threat to win the East for the next 4-5 years.

    We don't get by Atlanta or Washington in the playoffs without Lance. Our future took a huge hit when we lost him.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Sookie View Post
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    As long as they have Paul George and decent players surrounding him, it hasn't.
    LeBron couldn't win it by himself, what makes you think Paul George can?

    We need more than "decent" players around him.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Awesome View Post
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    Disagree.
    Can you lose something you don't have?
    ďJust because you're offended, doesn't mean you're right.Ē ― Ricky Gervais.

    What if someone from a school of business or management school were to ask, How did you do this? How did you get the Pacers turned around? Is there a general approach you've taken that can be summarized?

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    The Pacers went to the ECF two years in a row, with Lance producing at an average level. Lance's future is nice and all, but the Pacers have already proven they can compete when they don't get a whole lot out of him. That ability, to compete, doesn't disappear with Lance, when Lance wasn't the reason for the ability in the first place.
    ďJust because you're offended, doesn't mean you're right.Ē ― Ricky Gervais.

    What if someone from a school of business or management school were to ask, How did you do this? How did you get the Pacers turned around? Is there a general approach you've taken that can be summarized?

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    I think that this team will be a very pleasant surprise
    I think we are going to see an actual TEAM again, not just the sum of our parts
    2013-2014
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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Awesome View Post
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    Disagree.

    Lance's potential is crazy. That is the main reason it was so important to keep him. Lance and PG could have eventually formed the best wing combo in the NBA, throw in a defensive monster like Hibbert in the mix and we are a threat to win the East for the next 4-5 years.

    We don't get by Atlanta or Washington in the playoffs without Lance. Our future took a huge hit when we lost him.
    Lance was important to get by ATL, but Lance didn't play particularly well against Washington where he had 3 of his worst games in the playoffs. So you're last statement isn't 100% correct. But nevertheless -he isn't here anymore. So any improvements or things added to his game no longer affect us - outside of those that are disappointed that he's gone. They never would have been the best wing combo in the league - but even still, all the woulda, coulda, and shoulda's don't matter because he's gone - by his own doing nontheless. He CHOSE to leave when we gave him a competitive offer (perhaps the most competitive offer)

    As 86 mentioned, at this point we need to replace the production he brought to the team, while adding different dimensions that fits the current make-up of our roster. Thinking about "what could have been had he developed into all star player" is useless at this point IMO. We've competed at a high level before Lance's breakout season last year, there's no reason to believe we can't do so again.
    Last edited by Ace E.Anderson; 07-25-2014 at 11:14 AM.

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    Default Re: Has the Indiana Pacersí championship window closed?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dr. Awesome View Post
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    Disagree.

    Lance's potential is crazy. That is the main reason it was so important to keep him. Lance and PG could have eventually formed the best wing combo in the NBA, throw in a defensive monster like Hibbert in the mix and we are a threat to win the East for the next 4-5 years.

    We don't get by Atlanta or Washington in the playoffs without Lance. Our future took a huge hit when we lost him.
    If Lance's potential was that great I think someone would have given him a max contract. I few antics aren't going to dissuade a team from giving out a big contract if the players potential is that great. It is more likely Lance is who he is at this point, than him being a player with crazy potential.

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