What Could Be
With just a few seconds left in regulation, Slick Leonard says, “No, not in the preseason.” He was referring to Overtime, and the fact that he just didn’t want to spend five more minutes (on the game clock) watching what a game that meant nothing in the grand scheme of things.
Still, it was basketball, and it was a Pacers win (128-124 in overtime), and there were glimpses of things worth mentioning. Tonight’s game showed us what could be – both good and bad.
- The Good – Brandon Rush responded to his opportunity by being aggressive in the first half. He scored 13 points on 6 of 7 shooting from the floor. This Brandon Rush could be a key rotational player or starter, helping out at both ends.
- The Bad – He missed all five second half shots, going scoreless and fouling out in the fourth quarter. This Brandon Rush could be costing himself the $2.9 million on his fourth year option.
- The Good – James Posey hit four of seven three pointers, including a big one with 38 seconds left in the OT to give the Pacers the lead for good. He also got a big rebound and coolly drained four free throws in the last 10 seconds of the game. This James Posey could provide the veteran leadership and presence this young team needs desperately.
- The Bad – His one turnover threatened not only to cost the Pacers the game, but he quite possibly could have taken Roy Hibbert’s head off with his errant fastball. This James Posey could be a little too old and a little too slow for the amount of the trust that O’Brien is going to be tempted to give him.
- The Good – The Pacers hit 16 three pointers, taking 35 of them, while still getting 19 shots and 10 FTA’s for Roy Hibbert. This Pacer team could be pretty potent offensively.
- The Bad – The Pacers missed a third of their FTA’s and turned the ball over 21 times. This Pacer team could lose a lot of close games.
- The Good – Rookie 1st rounder Paul George scored 17 points and drained three treys in the last four minutes of the fourth quarter. This Paul George could be the personification of a bright and shiny future coming sooner than expected.
- The Bad – The other young guys – Darren Collison, Josh McRoberts, Tyler Hansbrough – really struggled. McRoberts fouled out in 27 minutes, and Collison was punished by both Luke Ridnour and Sebastian Telfair. These young Pacers could experience a lot of growing pains this year, manifesting itself in another big hole in the standings early in the season.
- The Good – Roy Hibbert’s line was absolutely ridiculous. Ridiculous. 27 points. 16 boards. 6 assists. If you’d told me when the Pacers drafted him, that he’d put up a line like that – even in the preseason – I would have said, “Nice to meet you, Mrs. Hibbert. You’ve raised a very nice young man.” This Roy Hibbert could be the key to the future.
- The Bad – Nope. Gonna finish on a positive note. Hibbert was a bad mutha (shut yo mouth) tonight.
Who’s the cat that won’t cop out, when there’s danger all about. Why, Roy Hibbert, sir. Thanks for asking.