Tag Archives: Pacers News

Dunk Contest Preview: Glenn Robinson III wants to shock the world

The NBA All-Star weekend’s premiere event is rapidly approaching on Saturday night: The Verizon Slam Dunk contest. The Pacers will be represented by Glenn Robinson III as he goes up against Derrick Jones Jr., DeAndre Jordan, and last year’s runner-up Aaron Gordon. Here’s a look at what each contestant brings to the table and their odds of winning:

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DeAndre Jordan: The 6’11” first-time All-Star Center for the Los Angeles Clippers. Jordan continues the recent trend of having at least one big man in the field. (2016 Andre Drummond; 2015 Mason Plumlee).  Continue reading Dunk Contest Preview: Glenn Robinson III wants to shock the world

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Pacers sign Alex Poythress to training camp deal

The Vertical is reporting that the Indiana Pacers have agreed to a partially guaranteed deal with small forward Alex Poythress.

In what amounts to a training camp deal, Poythress is unlikely to make the regular season roster, but he will probably join the Pacers D-League affiliate, the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, once the preseason games conclude.

Similar situation to how the Pacers signed Terran Petteway to a partially guaranteed deal last offseason, and Petteway joined the Mad Ants after being waived.

Poythress went undrafted in this year’s draft after averaging 10 points and 6 rebounds in his senior season at Kentucky. He missed most of his junior year with a torn ACL.

Poythress played for the Orlando Magic during the Summer League, where the Pacers got a chance to see him play in person during the week-long event.

Pacers waive Shayne Whittington, put roster at 15 players

The Pacers announced today that they have waived Shayne Whittington. Whittington’s contract would have become fully guaranteed on Monday, and this puts the Pacers back at the NBA roster limit of 15 players.

After signing Aaron Brooks, the Pacers were going to have to make a decision on getting rid of a player, it likely came down to Whittington or Rakeem Christmas who were rotating as the starting center during Summer League and both spent nearly the entire season together in the D League with the Pacers affiliate, the Fort Wayne Mad Ants. Christmas has a contract that is fully guaranteed for this season, so Whittington was in an uphill battle to show the front office and coaching staff that he deserved that final spot on the roster.

Whittington averaged 2.5 points and 1.5 rebounds while playing in only 27 games in his two seasons with the Pacers. He was signed as an undrafted free agent from Western Michigan.

Christmas stays on the roster and continues a transaction tree that goes all the way back to Dale Davis. 

Report: Aaron Brooks expected to sign 1-year deal with Pacers

Update: Shams now reports that the deal is done between Brooks and the Pacers : 1 year, $2.5 million and will be signed this week.

Continue reading Report: Aaron Brooks expected to sign 1-year deal with Pacers

Lance Stephenson considering a return to the Pacers

Born Ready may become Reborn Ready soon. Nate Taylor of the Indy Star reports that Lance Stephenson is considering a return to the Pacers as he mulls offers from multiple teams. Both sides appear to be interested in the possible reunion.

Stephenson has played for three teams since turning down the Pacers 5 year, $44 million deal just two years ago. After a challenging year with the Hornets, he was traded to the Clippers. The Clippers then traded him during last season to the injury-riddled Grizzlies where Stephenson started to find his groove as a player again. He averaged over 14 points per game while with Memphis, but the team declined his $9.4 million team option which made him an unrestricted free agent.  Continue reading Lance Stephenson considering a return to the Pacers

Pacers Summer League Game 2 Grades and Recap

In a sluggish, whistle-filled game, the Pacers Summer League squad lost to the Hornets 80-70. Glenn Robinson III and Shayne Whittington were the only double-digit scorers for the Pacers as the team seemed to struggle offensively against a more physical opponent than yesterday’s game. The first half was hard to watch as it was dominated by officiating. You know it’s a bad sign in the Summer League when the refs are a topic of conversation for the broadcast team. If you missed the analysis and highlights from Game 1, they are here. Much more positive notes to take from that game than this one.

Joe Young: 6 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 block, 0 turnovers in 22 minutes. (2 of 6 from field, 0 of 2 from 3-point range)

Grade: B-  Continue reading Pacers Summer League Game 2 Grades and Recap

ESPN reports Pacers, Kings have discussed Rudy Gay deal

Yesterday, there were some rumblings from unreliable sources and today Marc Stein of ESPN has reported that the Pacers and Kings have discussed a potential deal that would send Rudy Gay to the Pacers.

Continue reading ESPN reports Pacers, Kings have discussed Rudy Gay deal

Pacers & Al Jefferson agree in principle to 3-year, $30 million deal

The Indiana Pacers have made some noise in free agency. According to Woj, the Pacers have agreed in principle to a deal with veteran center Al Jefferson on a 3 year, $30 million deal.

Jefferson will immediately give the Pacers a post-scoring threat off the bench at the center position. Last season, the 31-year-old Jefferson averaged 12 points and 6 rebounds in only 23 minutes per game. Injuries have been an issue for him recently as he was limited to only 47 games last year. If you’re unfamiliar with Jefferson’s game, prepare yourself for a plethora of impressively effective pump fakes and slow moving post moves.  Continue reading Pacers & Al Jefferson agree in principle to 3-year, $30 million deal

Pacers Summer League Preview

The Indiana Pacers announced their roster for the Orlando Summer League earlier this week. The roster features many familiar faces including five players likely to suit up for the blue and gold next season and will be coached by Popeye Jones, Pacers assistant coach. The team will play five games that will run through the heart of the NBA free agency madness from July 2 through July 8 (Pacers schedule below). No one’s playing in the Summer League without something to prove and we’ll look at what some of the key players on the roster need to work on.  Continue reading Pacers Summer League Preview

Nate McMillan fills out coaching staff

Indiana Pacers announced who all will be on Nate McMillan’s coaching staff. Defensive guru Dan Burke and Popeye Jones both will return, while McMillan adds Bill Bayno as his top assistant. Bayno and McMillman worked together during nearly all of McMillan’s time as a head coach with the Portland Trailblazers.

“I was impressed with him then,” said McMillan on his time with Bayno in Portland, “and always hoped I would have the opportunity to work with him again.”  Continue reading Nate McMillan fills out coaching staff

Will the Pacers re-sign any of their free agents?

The Pacers have already made some major changes to their roster in the early stages of the off-season: trading George Hill for Jeff Teague in a 3-team deal and trading their 1st-round pick for Thaddeus Young. If the Pacers sign 2nd-round pick Georges Niang, that’ll put the Pacers roster at 13 players under contract for next season with only two open roster spots left. The Pacers have four free agents from last year’s team: Ian Mahinmi, Solomon Hill, Jordan Hill, and Ty Lawson. Let’s take a look at each player and the likelihood that the Pacers will retain their services for the 2016-17 season.  Continue reading Will the Pacers re-sign any of their free agents?

Pacers draft a playmaker in Georges Niang

With the Pacers trading away their first-round selection for Thaddeus Young just hours before the draft and acquiring Jeff Teague in a swap of hometown heroes the day prior, most of the excitement for the Pacers was done early yesterday, but the Pacers still had the 50th overall selection in the second round. With this pick, the Pacers selected senior forward Georges Niang out of Iowa State.

Pacers GM Kevin Pritchard seemed very pleased in his post-draft press conference that Niang was still available when the Pacers were on the clock.

“We thought very highly of him,” said Pritchard on the 23-year-old Niang, who averaged 20.5 points, 6.2 rebounds, and 3.3 assists last season. “We didn’t think he’d get to 50. We had him a lot higher on the board, so we were pretty excited that he got to 50.”  Continue reading Pacers draft a playmaker in Georges Niang

Pacers acquire Thaddeus Young for 1st-round pick

Update: Trade is now official on July 7, 2016.

You might want to take shelter if you’re in the Indianapolis area. Woj Bombs have been spotted twice in the last two days: first, the Pacers swap hometown heroes (analysis here), and today the Pacers have acquired Thaddeus Young from the Brooklyn Nets.

The Pacers give up their 20th pick in this year’s draft and a future 2nd-round pick. Thad Young will slide immediately into the Pacers starting lineup at the power forward position.  Continue reading Pacers acquire Thaddeus Young for 1st-round pick

The NBA is rigged? Stephen Jackson and Metta World Peace have something to say about that

If you watched game six of the NBA Finals last night and enjoy basketball Twitter, you probably saw Ayesha Curry’s tweet that got over 80,000 RTs and 70,000 likes before she finally deleted it. In her frustration during what apparently was a difficult night (besides just the game), she tweeted out that the “NBA is rigged!” in response to her husband fouling out. Today, the infamous duo of the Malice at the Palice, Metta World Peace, the player formerly known as Ron Artest, and Stephen Jackson, were the voices of reason on the subject. Seriously.

ayesha-curry-tweet

Warning: Both videos contain vulgar language.  Continue reading The NBA is rigged? Stephen Jackson and Metta World Peace have something to say about that

Larry Bird undecided on Frank Vogel’s future with Pacers

UPDATE: Larry Bird made it official. Frank Vogel will not be the coach for the Indiana Pacers next season.

Last night, seemingly immediately after the Pacers season ended in a defeat to the Toronto Raptors, the offseason drama began for the Pacers with a Woj Bomb.

“Wait, what?” was the general reaction for Pacers writers, bloggers, and fans as well as the national media. Although Vogel was deservedly criticized at times for his rotations (STAGGER!) and inept offense especially late in games, he’s still a top young coach in the league. He’s a defensive wizard.  Continue reading Larry Bird undecided on Frank Vogel’s future with Pacers

Mahinmi puts team on his ailing back, Pacers tie series 2-2

In the first three games of the series, the Pacers offense was essentially a one-man show: Paul George. After losing two straight games, Pacers coach Frank Vogel had a simple message for his team: “Trust your teammates.”

“The message before the game was to really move the ball and play for each other,” Ian Mahinmi said. “That’s what we did from the very first minute.”

The results? The Pacers blitzed the Raptors early to a first-quarter lead of 28-14 and never looked back as they tied the series at 2-2 with a 100-83 victory.

“Everyone has to be options for us, offensive threats,” Paul George said after the game. “Tonight, they were, and we exploded on offense.”

The two biggest benefactors to the Pacers devotion to sharing the ball were Ian Mahinmi and George Hill, who went from scoring 40 points combined in the first three games to scoring 44 points combined (a team-high 22 points a piece) in game four as they both had perhaps their best games of the season.

“I can’t take credit for this today,” Mahinmi said of the best game of his career. “Most of my shots were dunks and shots under the rim … my teammates really did an awesome job of finding me.” Continue reading Mahinmi puts team on his ailing back, Pacers tie series 2-2

The Warning Signs & Bright Lights from Game One

Thanks to a sizzling second half from Paul George (27 points on 10 of 13 shooting), the Indiana Pacers defeated the Toronto Raptors 100-90 and lead the series 1-0.

It’s a huge win to open the playoffs as the team that wins game one wins the series 77% of the time, but if the Pacers want to cause the Raptors to go home after the first round for the third straight season via defeat to a lower-seeded team, there were some problematic areas that the Pacers can’t allow to become series-long trends.

Continue reading The Warning Signs & Bright Lights from Game One

Paul George enjoys some popcorn on the bench

The Pacers clinched their 5th playoff appearance in their last 6 seasons (or they have made it every year that Paul George has had two healthy legs) by blowing out the Brooklyn Nets.

At one point in the 3rd quarter, the Pacers led by 40, so the starters were free to sit back, relax, and enjoy the rest of the game. Paul George even managed to get a snack from a young fan sitting behind the home team’s bench. 

Paul George hasn’t been able to sit out a lot of final quarters this year, so it’s good to see him taking advantage of it.

  
Get your popcorn ready, Pacers fans! The Pacers are in the playoffs for the 21st time since 1990, which is the second most in the NBA over that time period. They will face either the Toronto Raptors or Cleveland Cavaliers.

The Constant Evolution of Myles Turner

With the Indiana Pacers trailing by three points to the Oklahoma City Thunder with just under a minute remaining in the game, Monta Ellis drove towards the lane. As Steven Adams and Serge Ibaka converged to help, Ellis kicked it out to the open man standing in the corner ready for the pass behind the 3-point line, 19-year-old rookie, Myles Turner.

The rookie, who had only attempted two 3-pointers and had made none so far this season, calmly gathered the low pass at his feet and immediately rose with confidence to take the shot. Nothing but net. Tie game.

His first career 3-pointer and yet another Mylestone in the constant evolution of Myles Turner.

Myles Turner learned a new skill. Something that seems to happen nearly every game for the fast learning, hard working rookie.

“His biggest quality is that he’s not afraid. He’s never afraid, he’s never shying away from the moment,” Paul George said after the Thunder game, “He asks questions; he wants to learn, wants to get better, and works hard. It’s everything you want in a young player. He has it, and he’s going to be special for us.”

At the start of the season, it was clear that Frank Vogel didn’t want to put too much burden on the Pacers first-round draft pick. He was going to play off the bench at the 5 spot, so he could focus on learning just one position while he got used to the speed of the NBA game.

Myles came into the league with a couple of skills: A smooth jumper, his Turneround™ post move, and an impeccable sense of timing when it came to blocking shots. He used these skills to average 5.9 points, 3.4 rebounds, and 0.8 blocks in his first 18 career games and missed over a month and a half with a thumb injury. Modest numbers in about 18 minutes per contest, but you could still see flashes of his potential in every game.

Then the Pacers went on a 4-game Western Conference road trip and Myles Turner put on a nightly show. Turner averaged 20.5 points, 6.3 rebounds, 2.8 blocks over the trip, including a 31-performance over the defending champion Golden State Warriors that made me tweet this:

“You would have to say fairly that he’s one of the most, if not the most, surprising players in the draft,” Detroit Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy said to the Indy Star. “I think everybody pretty much knew he was going to be a good player, but I think a lot of people thought it would take more time than this and he’s playing very well.”

Turner was starting to show off even more skills: preventing dunks with blocks that recalled the memory of Roy Hibbert’s block on Carmelo Anthony in the playoffs, hook shots in the post, crafty, quick finishes in the lane. While he was still out of position at times on defense and Vogel knew it might be a “roller coaster,” Myles Turner was moved to the starting lineup, where Pacers fans hope he stays for a good 12-15 years.

Not only is Turner starting, but Vogel is playing him at power forward alongside Ian Mahinmi. While Mahinmi has recently struggled to stay on the court, the Pacers are now 4-1 when the tandem starts the game.

“I don’t know how fast and how far he develops in the final 29 games,” said Vogel in Candace Buckner’s great profile on Turner, “but it will be a big factor in what our ceiling is.”

The result is a rare mix of spacing on offense, but an abundance of rim protection and rebounding on defense. Turner is blocking anything that comes near him at the rim and that includes serving up some smothered chicken to LeBron James.

In the OKC game, assistant coach Popeye Jones told Turner that he wasn’t doing much on defense according to Jeremiah Johnson. Turner responded with 5 blocks in the 3rd-quarter alone.

The lineup is just touching the surface of its potential in terms of spacing now that Turner can take open corner threes. As Turner proves he’s ready to hit the long range shots and Vogel gives him more freedom to take those, the spacing will continue to grow on offense.

The end result may be Larry Bird finally getting that fast paced offense with lots of free flowing movement and spacing, and Frank Vogel playing his preferred style of having two bigs on the court at all times. The best of both worlds.

The always growing skillset of Myles Turner can do that for you.

Myles Turner signed 8×10 giveaway:
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iPacers Biweekly Wrap: 11/8/2015 – 11/22/2015

The Pacers played 7 games in the last two weeks and only lost 2 games by a combined 5 points. They are now 8-2 in their last 10 games over the 0-3 start and sit at 4th-place in the East. In this 10-game stretch, the Pacers have had the best defense in the NBA by advanced metrics and currently have the 5th-best net rating in the NBA for the entire season. The Pacers defensive philosophy may have changed, but it’s as good as ever. Forcing turnovers was never a focal point in year’s past, but they currently average the 2nd-most steals per game in the league and forced 54 turnovers in the last two blowout victories against the Sixers and Bucks. Here’s some quick analysis on each player over the last two weeks:

1. Paul George: Paul George has never played better in his career than he has in the past two weeks. At this point, it’d be surprising if he doesn’t earn the Eastern Conference Player of the Month. While Paul George’s streak of 26 points came to an end at 8, it only happened in a game the Pacers won by nearly 40 points where George “only” scored 20 points in the first three quarters while sitting on the final frame of the blowout. No one is more responsible for how well the Pacers have been playing their past 10 games than PG.
Previous 2-weeks Stats: 21.5 PPG, 9 RPG, 4.3 APG, 2 STL
Previous Grade: A-
Current 2-weeks stats: 27.7 PPG, 8 RPG, 5.3 APG, 1.3 STL
Current Grade: A+

Continue reading iPacers Biweekly Wrap: 11/8/2015 – 11/22/2015