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News » Indiana Pacers Getting Inside 2009-04-28

Indiana Pacers Getting Inside 2009-04-28

Indiana Pacers Getting Inside 2009-04-28
The core is set with forward Danny Granger, guard Brandon Rush and center Roy Hibbert being the focal points. Now the Pacers have to find pieces to put around them.

The Pacers were one of the most entertaining teams in the league, as they averaged 105 points. The problem they ran into was that they didn't know how to stop their opponents. Teams shot 46 percent from the field and averaged 106 points a game against the Pacers.

Coach Jim O'Brien said they have to get more athletic if they expect to improve their defense, which has been their downfall the past few seasons.

"We're not necessarily built to be a great defensive team," he said. "Right now our talent lends itself to scoring the fifth-most points in the league and shooting well from the three. I just don't think we are athletic enough to be the type of defensive team that allows you to get in the playoffs and allows you to do something in the playoffs."

The Pacers don't have much money to work with on the free agent market, so they're going to have to hope they can get an athletic player with their lottery pick.

Indiana missed the playoffs for the third straight season, but team officials feel the franchise is taking necessary steps to improve.

"This is a year we're going to look back on and realize the foundation for a complete turnaround for this franchise started this year," O'Brien said.

SEASON HIGHLIGHT: Swingman Mike Dunleavy's knee injury helped forward Danny Granger burst onto the scene this season. The fourth-year forward made his first All-Star appearance and finished sixth in the league in scoring. Granger became the first player in NBA history to improve his scoring at least five points a game three straight seasons.

TURNING POINT: Holding onto big leads was a foreign concept for the Pacers. They blew 15 double-digit leads. Most of those blown leads came early in the season when the seven new players were still getting use to coach Jim O'Brien's coaching style. The Pacers would have made the playoffs if they had won four of those 15 games.

Author: Fox Sports
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Added: April 28, 2009


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