Two hours before game time, I finally pressed publish on my evaluation of the Pacers' trade for Leandro Barbosa. I probably should have held off a little longer. The Pacers just finished decimating the Clippers and right out front was the bench; a unit I argued earlier tonight was not likely to be any better offensively with Barbosa inserted and George Hill moving to full-time point guard. I have been wrong countless time in my basketball writing, but I don't know if it's ever been so immediately and emphatically made obvious.
Hill and Barbosa were terrific tonight, combining for 27 points and 9 assists on 11-17 from the field. The entire offense ran smoothly, especially with that second unit on the floor, and Tyler Hansbrough benefited tremendously from the activity level on the perimeter, finishing with 17 points of his own on 7-10 shooting.
As I said at the end of my earlier post, I'm thrilled to be wrong. For one night at least everything worked exactly the way I thought it wouldn't. Here's hoping I continue to be wrong about this one!