What are we going to do about coaching? I like Jim O'Brien and his offensive philosophy. I like the fact that we are being built into an uptempo style team that can score lots of points. My concern is his defensive philosophy, his relationship with players, and his relationship with Bird.
O'Brien is known to be hardnosed, and stubborn. These traits are not good when answers are needed on the defensive end of the floor. Bird has come out and said that Dick Harter needs more of a role in the D, O'Brien said he will take care of it. This is not going to be a situation that is going to play out well. O'Brien is not the type to hand over reins to anyone else, even if Bird wants him to. The fact he has not given him an extension is a key sign that he is not sure on O'Brien either. I understand why we hired O'Brien. We needed a discipline driven coach at the time, to help mold an unbalanced roster. Those days are past. Now we have a PG who can not play in O'Briens pass dont dribble system (Ford Dribbles too much according to O"Brien" and another PG in Jack who had a couple run in's with O"Brien by way of Ford.
Answer: I know that O'Brien will not be let go before the season. I can see a good chance that he will be gone fairly early though. If the Pacers do not start out well then he will be gone. I think the answer may be Sam Mitchell. He is someone that offensively fits the mold of what the Pacers want to do. Push the ball and score points. He is also someone that is known for being tough minded defensively. He could be the answer. I just do not think O'Brien is the answer. If the Pacers continue to struggle this year, either O'Brien or Bird have to go.