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Let us talk about Jalen Smith

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  • Let us talk about Jalen Smith

    Since not everyone gets a chance to attend the Pacers Digest Gatherings, I thought it would be a fun idea to bring the gathering to the Digest. For those who have never attended basically we take a topic and go around the room with each person having some time to talk about the subject. Sadly, the facility we have had to use lately closes at 9 and while we start at 5 you would be surprised how quickly those 4 hours go and how rushed we are at the end.

    So, what I'm going to do here and see how it goes is pick a few topics on different days and give everyone on the digest a time to talk about the subject at hand. Typically, we try and allow people to go in any direction they want but just to make this easier I'll throw out a few talking points and people can either expand or contract on them, or frankly ignore them altogether as this is a fun exercise and hopefully will instill some interesting topics for the upcoming dog days of summer.

    With all of that in mind I'll throw out some topics of discussion but please feel free to add and expand your own.

    By the numbers and I'm just going to use his numbers in Indiana because I feel that he was not given consistent time or playing directions in Phoenix.

    13.4 PPG
    7.6 RPG
    1.0 BPG
    53.1% FG
    37.3% 3FG

    1. Ultimately in today's NBA do you consider him a power forward or a center? (for the sake of this argument there is a difference between the two positions)
    2. Do you agree with Rick Carlisle statement that he was signed to be the starting 4? In other words do you agree he should be the designated starter prior to camp?
    3. If you play him at the 4 and Myles at the 5 are we just once again going with a 2 big lineup and it ultimately won't work?
    4. What is the biggest strength you see with him?
    5. What is the biggest weakness you see with him?
    6. Is he a long term Pacer or do they look to flip him for a big name?
    7. Does he compliment the combination of Duarte & Mathurin, if so why? If not why?
    8. Will Tyrese Haliburton bring out the best in him?
    9. Does he have a chance of winning MIP for the NBA next season?
    10. Is Rick Carlisle the coach to get the best of him?



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

  • #2
    and of note, those numbers are him playing just under 25 minutes per game....

    should be fun to watch him develop if he goes about his business as he did last year...and he should as hes arguably underpaid and playing for his next contract

    Comment


    • #3
      I think I'd rather see him in a 4/5 combo with Jackson because I'm no sure Stix has the lateral agility to guard some 4 and switch to wings effectively. At least not yet. And I could also be way off on that assessment. But in that sense defensively, I see him NOW more as a defender of 5s.

      IJax obviously with his unique combo of height, athleticism, agility can just about guard any position, at least in short spurts. And I think combining those two you get as good or better shot blocking and rebounding than you'd get with Turner/Smith. Long term, I think (I hope) Stix/IJax has potential to do a lot more than Myles + either of the two.
      I'd rather die standing up than live on my knees.

      -Emiliano Zapata

      Comment


      • #4
        I see Smith as a combo 4/5. I have no problem Carlisle saying he is the starting 4. He showed enough last year for me.
        I think he is a very mature person and will work on his craft.
        {o,o}
        |)__)
        -"-"-

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Peck View Post
          . . . 1. Ultimately in today's NBA do you consider him a power forward or a center? (for the sake of this argument there is a difference between the two positions)

          More of a 5 than a 4, imo. The primary difference between 4's and 5's is their ability to defend in space. He is a stretch big, to use a generic term. Much of what position he ends up playing will depend on his ability to defend in space. Last year, he really didn't need to defend anyone because the team defense was so poor. This year he needs to show who he can and who he cannot defend. That will go a long way towards defining his position.

          Offensively, he shot .373 3P% last year. His lifetime average is .317. He needs to show that last year's offensive production, especially his 3P% was not a fluke, but something he can be counted on game in and game out.


          2. Do you agree with Rick Carlisle statement that he was signed to be the starting 4? In other words do you agree he should be the designated starter prior to camp?

          It got him to resign for what the Pacers could pay him. Since the Pacers are probably not going anywhere this season, it was a cheap price to pay. If he plays down to his salary, his starting spot could be up for grabs.

          3. If you play him at the 4 and Myles at the 5 are we just once again going with a 2 big lineup and it ultimately won't work?

          I believe this will ultimately be a moot point, as I expect Myles to be traded. The main difference between this and Turbonis will be that Jalen and Myles both can shoot from the outside. That removes the big problem of teams defending Turbonis by letting Sabonis alone to shoot from three by sagging off him and clogging the lane.

          4. What is the biggest strength you see with him?

          IDK. Right now, he seems like a jack of all trades/master of none kind of guy. He shot well last year, that's important. It is his primary skill. It opens up the other stuff.

          5. What is the biggest weakness you see with him?

          His situational awareness. Last year it seemed that he spent too much time trying to decide what he needed to do. The game seemed too fast for him at times.

          6. Is he a long term Pacer or do they look to flip him for a big name?

          Sound cruel, but play him until someone better comes along. I don't expect him to become an all star type player.


          7. Does he compliment the combination of Duarte & Mathurin, if so why? If not why?

          Yes, he stretches the floor with his shooting. Opens up more space inside for the wings to operate.

          8. Will Tyrese Haliburton bring out the best in him? IDK, I hope so.

          9. Does he have a chance of winning MIP for the NBA next season? Man, I hope so.

          10. Is Rick Carlisle the coach to get the best of him?

          LOL, like the way this was phrased. Yes, Rick can get the best out of him.
          Last edited by xIndyFan; 08-05-2022, 02:50 PM.

          Comment


          • #6
            1. Ultimately in today's NBA do you consider him a power forward or a center? (for the sake of this argument there is a difference between the two positions)
            PF. From the little I've seen, his game is more suited for the 4.

            2. Do you agree with Rick Carlisle statement that he was signed to be the starting 4? In other words do you agree he should be the designated starter prior to camp?
            If it helped persuade him to sign here - sure.

            3. If you play him at the 4 and Myles at the 5 are we just once again going with a 2 big lineup and it ultimately won't work?
            Nah. He's quite different from Omas.

            4. What is the biggest strength you see with him?
            Versatility. Does a lot of good things.

            5. What is the biggest weakness you see with him?
            Build. Have a few cheeseburgers and fries.

            6. Is he a long term Pacer or do they look to flip him for a big name?
            Depends on his play. Not sure the team really knows what they have. He was a lotto pick, so.....??

            7. Does he compliment the combination of Duarte & Mathurin, if so why? If not why?
            Young, athletic..... that works well with the rebuild.

            8. Will Tyrese Haliburton bring out the best in him?
            Hopefully.

            9. Does he have a chance of winning MIP for the NBA next season?
            Hopefully.

            10. Is Rick Carlisle the coach to get the best of him?
            Hopefully.


            Comment


            • #7
              A post post thought..... Is wearing glasses a detriment to his game or not ?? I wear them and the low-level hoops I've played, they were just noticeable most of the time. Wonder why he doesn't go to contacts (sorry dal9) or get Lasik.

              Comment


              • #8
                1. Ultimately in today's NBA do you consider him a power forward or a center?
                - I honestly think it all depends on who the guy next to him is. I really like Jalen Smith & his game reminds me of Bobby Portis who I think we all agree is a starting minutes NBA guy. Unlikely we get a Giannis Antetokoumpo to go next to Stix, but if we can find someone to take on those somewhat bigger challenges then I don't think it matters. Right now next to Turner he is a PF as he has the offensive skillset & more perimeter mobility at his disposal. In a classical sense (for the modern NBA) I think he is a C.
                2. Do you agree with Rick Carlisle statement that he was signed to be the starting 4? In other words do you agree he should be the designated starter prior to camp?
                - 100%, although if we trade Turner then I think it's open for interpretation at what position he is starting at next to anyone not named Bitadze who would certainly be the C.

                3. If you play him at the 4 and Myles at the 5 are we just once again going with a 2 big lineup and it ultimately won't work?
                - I think offensively we may actually be a bit better off as long as Stix is that 37% 3pt shooter & we can get Myles in that mid-range, or rolling to the rimon a more regular basis. I think Stix has better perimeter ability as a quicker & longer player as well. I do view it as a 2 bigs line-up, but I'm hoping it's more like the ones in Boston or Cleveland.

                4. What is the biggest strength you see with him?
                - His rebounding looks good, but leaning into he may be more of a C than a PF his ability to finish around the rim with both hands looks insanely good so I'm going to lean on that.

                5. What is the biggest weakness you see with him?
                - Not that he is bad defensively at all, but this is where he (like a lot of the team) needs to make big steps, especially as a perimeter defender so we dont have to hide him like we did Sabonis.

                6. Is he a long term Pacer or do they look to flip him for a big name?
                - Right now I put him with Haliburton + Mathurin as a core guy going forward.

                7. Does he compliment the combination of Duarte & Mathurin, if so why? If not why?
                - I believe so, he hasnt played a lot so the next 2 seasons will tell us a lot, but he isn't going to take the ball out of their hands & I think will be a nice bail out option or play finisher if those guys get a little overzealous with their dribbling.

                8. Will Tyrese Haliburton bring out the best in him?
                - Yup a pass 1st PG is ideal for Stix.

                9. Does he have a chance of winning MIP for the NBA next season?
                - Nah not enough to improve upon given limited minutes/court-time, if there was a breakout award then maybe.

                10. Is Rick Carlisle the coach to get the best of him?
                - I think he is an okay coach for him, but again I'm just not sure how athletic Stix is, I need to see more. Carlisle loves he guys being lob threats, so if that's in his game as well as that outside shot then Carlisle will certainly get a lot out of him.


                BONUS - In regards to the 1st question, if I-Jax can genuinely fill out & develop as needed, then i cam see I-Jax + Stix being a similar version of the Boston big Timelord + Horford.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Dudes a clear 5 in today's game and if/when Turner is moved that is where he will get almost all of his minutes. The board will initially be high on him because he will be a reasonably consistent scorer and put up decent rebound numbers. If his effort and effectiveness doesn't get a lot better on the defensive side of the ball the honeymoon will end quickly. Like the guy and and his potential just have some doubts he will realize said potential.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Downtown Bang! View Post
                    Like the guy and and his potential just have some doubts he will realize said potential.
                    Explain this please. What exactly is his 'potential' ?? Who came up with whatever it is. And how does he fail to live up to something abstract ??

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      1. Ultimately in today's NBA do you consider him a power forward or a center? (for the sake of this argument there is a difference between the two positions) Absolutely 4 for now, likely forever. While low-post defense (offense) is far from being as important as quarter a century ago - it still matters a little. Jalen CAN NOT defend the post - like at all.

                      2. Do you agree with Rick Carlisle statement that he was signed to be the starting 4? In other words do you agree he should be the designated starter prior to camp? That statement was probably needed to get him to sign here given the contract limitations we faced. And as there was no other obvious candidate for that job, I'm fine with it. We shouldn't overcommit though. If that set-up sucks - bring in Oshae.

                      3. If you play him at the 4 and Myles at the 5 are we just once again going with a 2 big lineup and it ultimately won't work? Very different 2-big line-up than Myles&Sabonis so I wouldn't draw comparisons. And I think it would work great (for the tank). But problem would not be that there is 2 bigs, but that they are just not good enough to be winning starters in this league.

                      4. What is the biggest strength you see with him? Offensive rebounding and 3-point shooting. What I specifically enjoyed with Jalen's treys are that he gets them up fast. IMO, Myles has never been able to transform his practice court marksmanship due to slow decisions and slow release. Myles is a good shooter with anti-game situation tendencies. Jalen's shooting tendencies work in actual game.

                      5. What is the biggest weakness you see with him? All and everything in aspects of interior defense. He is so top-heavy and with unsteady stance, that he can be bumped way out of way by any adequately physical NBA player. In a team filled with lousy post defenders (I am not speaking about rim protection here), he was the worst. Given how weak the comparison points of Oshae, I-Jax and Myles are in this particular aspect - that is really something to be way worse than any of them. We have a roster shouting to be punished inside!

                      P.S. this inability to hold position also makes Jalen a liability on DEFENSIVE boards. His length and hustle makes him a good offensive rebounder, but he can not box-out or otherwise do much prevent people from crashing offensive glass.


                      6. Is he a long term Pacer or do they look to flip him for a big name? Mediocre NBA player (Jalen IS an NBA player, just nothing special as such) rarely stays in the same team for too many seasons. The nature of the league is such that they get traded or they sign elsewhere as FAs. So while I don't see any urge to offload him, I can hardly see him being here in 2028.

                      7. Does he compliment the combination of Duarte & Mathurin, if so why? If not why? To me Jalen belongs to a group of players to whom it doesn't matter much whom they play with. His better attributes suit any line-up, his warts are not covered or hidden by any courtmates. Thus I reckon this question rather irrelevant.

                      8. Will Tyrese Haliburton bring out the best in him? Tyrese has all the attributes to make EVERYBODY around him better - at least offensively. So yes, but not more so than any other guy in our roster. LESS than those who can REALLY benefit from pairing with Tyrese.

                      P.S. I actually think that while Tyrese will deffo get Jalen his preferred shots, it would be TJMac with whom there could be a "special connection" with. That TJMac move where he drives to the heart of defense, runs a route below/behind the basket and then seeks for outlet pass would SO call for quick-switch trey-shooting big lingering on arc.


                      9. Does he have a chance of winning MIP for the NBA next season? None. 1st of all, just not good ENOUGH. 2ndly, you don't win awards playing for a 25-win team. Jalen does have a chance to get a honorary mention as of someone around spots 6-10 in MIP ladder, though.

                      10. Is Rick Carlisle the coach to get the best of him? Referring to my earlier answer for Duarte. Carlisle is an average to average-plus NBA coach in this decade. Having an average coach gives average results. Carlisle is not the WRONG coach for Jalen though. That I am confident about.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by PetPaima View Post
                        9. Does he have a chance of winning MIP for the NBA next season? None. 1st of all, just not good ENOUGH. 2ndly, you don't win awards playing for a 25-win team. Jalen does have a chance to get a honorary mention as of someone around spots 6-10 in MIP ladder, though.
                        Kevin Love won with a 17 win team.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by PacerDude View Post

                          Explain this please. What exactly is his 'potential' ?? Who came up with whatever it is. And how does he fail to live up to something abstract ??
                          Is it really that abstract? The guy has good size, length, athleticism and some NBA level skills. He was also drafted 10th. Sure there is a decent % of players drafted there that bust but team's are definitely not drafting guys with a 2nd unit ceiling at that point in the draft. If you think that Smith is destined to be a solid, two-way starter on a playoff team just drop the snark, disagree with my take and say so.....

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Downtown Bang! View Post
                            Is it really that abstract?
                            It absolutely is. There are no numbers that a 10th pick is supposed to attain. No snark-ness at all here. Just wondering what you are thinking about when you say that.

                            Define his potential.

                            Comment

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