Feb. 28, 2012; Indianapolis, IN, USA; Indiana Pacers point guard Darren Collison (2) dribbles the ball against Golden State Warriors shooting guard Monta Ellis (8) at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Indiana defeated Golden State 102-78. Mandatory credit: Michael Hickey-US PRESSWIRE
The Indiana Pacers are ten games over .500 and the play of their starting unit deserves much of the credit for carrying the team to the bulk of those wins.
A focal point of angst among many has been the lack of pure point guard play from starter Darren Collison. He's struggled delivering in pick and roll situations, no doubt and his assist numbers are below the norm for playmaking point guards. But the Pacers score more points than their opponents when he's on the floor, so I find it hard to argue against success.
DC has made his share of plays for the Pacers, but often times they are plays made for himself. When you consider he's the fourth or fifth offensive option, he does provide a threat to burst into the lane and score when defenses try to take the Pacers' top options away. The bottom line is winning and Collison has been in the mix for a lot of that this season, setting the pace with the ball in his hands.
DC joined Grady & Big Joe on Thursday morning to discuss the season thus far and shared his thoughts on winning remaining his primary goal. Here are his comments In response to Collison being considered the quarterback ofi the team, setting the tone for the Pacers at both ends of the floor.
That's my role, that's my job. We're 22-12 and I'm definitely going to take pride in that, being a leader for this team. I take pride in just winning period, regardless of how I get the job done, I just want to win. When I first got here with the trade when Larry brought me over here, I just wanted to be a playoff team first. Now we had a chance to be a playoff team last year, and now this year I want to make a deep run in the playoffs. The job of a point guard is, you've gotta do whatever it takes to win, you've gotta make sure everybody's on the same page and you've gotta be an extension of the coach.
It should be interesting to see how Collison and that first unit continue to evolve over the remainder of the season. Paul George showed in the Golden State game that he has the ability to create for his teammates as well, so if he can continue to do that on a consistent basis, it will change the dynamic for how Collison can attack opponents.