Never forget the impact of Jarrett Jack.
Mike Wells talked to Jarrett Jack who confirms the Indiana Pacers will not match Toronto's 4-year, $20 million offer for the combo guard and all-around good guy. Toronto has scheduled a presser to announce Jack's signing on Tuesday when he will officially join college running mate Chris Bosh and the rest of the Raptors.
Pacer fans should never minimize the one season of run Jack gave the Blue and Gold.
Jack should always be remembered for doing his part to lay the foundation for any future success the Pacers enjoy. He arrived amidst a rebuilding job by Larry Bird after a big chunk of demo was completed last summer. In his one season, Jack did plenty to help move the team back in the right direction in their attempts to change the culture inside the Fieldhouse and the team's perception outside the Fieldhouse.
Jack was all class from the day he arrives, so it's no surprise that his comments on the way out were all class and I'm sure the Pacers' organization reciprocates his feelings.
"I wanted to be a Pacer come next season," Jack said. "I'm indebted to coach (Jim) O'Brien for what he did for me last season. Not only him, but also (team president) Larry Bird and (general manager) David Morway. They put me in the position to play well and get a long-term contract. I'll always be indebted to them."
Not matching Toronto's offer was an easy business decision for the Pacers, but one they struggled with because Jack is held in such high regard for what he can do off the court, as well as on. He was onboard from day one, fully invested in the game plan. He always played for the "we" before the "me" and tried to hold himself and his teammates accountable. It was a tough year with close losses and poorly-timed injuries, but Jack was always there ready to spill his guts in all 82 games.
For that, his brief tenure in Indy should leave a lasting legacy that offers a standard for all players to measure themselve by with a simple question: What are you doing to make the Pacers better today?