2012 NBA Draft: Should Pacers Fans Trust Larry Bird's Draft History?

NEW YORK NY - JANUARY 30: Miles Plumlee #21 of the Duke Blue Devils dunks the ball against the St. John's Red Storm at Madison Square Garden on January 30 2011 in New York City. (Photo by Nick Laham/Getty Images)

As we all know by now, the Indiana Pacers selected Miles Plumlee with the 26th pick. Some consider it a horrible pick and reach. Others consider it a need that was filled with the pick. An interesting quote Frank Vogel gave after the pick when he was talking to the media was, "Trust Larry Bird's draft history." But should we? That quote came after massive backlash from fans after the pick. It seems like this pick could come back and bite Indiana badly if Perry Jones III or Arnett Moultrie flourish in the NBA.

After the jump, let's dive into Larry Bird's draft history and really see if we should trust him with his picks of Miles Plumlee and Orlando Johnson.

I will give you my analysis in three categories. Those are impact starter, role player, and bust. We will go back and see how Larry Bird's draft categorizes into this. Now, let's see how Bird stacks up and what we can expect through stats with Miles Plumlee.

2004 NBA Draft: The Pacers stayed put in this draft with both of their picks as they selected David Harrison at 29 and Rashad Wright at 60.

Overview: Harrison didn't make much of an impact with the Pacers and Wright never made the team and plays overseas ever since. This Draft was pretty boring if you were a Pacers fan. Two busts.

2005 NBA Draft: Indiana once again stayed out with both of their picks at 17 and 46. They drafted two forwards in Danny Granger and Erazem Lorbek.

Overview: Granger has been one of the best picks Bird has ever selected and he's still playing for the Pacers a t a very high level. He's one of the key cogs to the Pacers success now a days. Lorbek never came over and was apart of the George Hill trade last year. One impact starter and one bust.

2006 NBA Draft: Bird does do one small trade on draft night as they selected Shawne Williams at pick 17 and James White at 31.

White was brought to Indiana for the rights to the 45th pick, Alexander Johnson. The Pacers gave up a 2007 and 2008 second round pick to do this deal though.

Overview: This draft was a dud by Bird. Both of these players didn't come close to their expectations and eventually fizzled out and left the Pacers. Two busts.

2007 NBA Draft: Indiana did not have a draft pick in 2007 as there pick went to Atlanta to complete the Al Harrington trade. The Pacers did acquire the 39th pick though from Miami which got us Stanko Barac.

Overview: Stanko Barac has never come over and played for the Pacers. One bust.

2008 NBA Draft: Bird drafted Jerryd Bayless with the 11th pick, but was then sent to Portland for Brandon Rush. Also included in the deal were Josh McRoberts and Jarrett Jack coming to Indiana and Ike Diogu joining Bayless in Portland with Kevin Pritchard.

Indiana then traded Jermaine O'Neal and the rights to the 41st pick (Nathan Jawai) to the Raptors for T.J. Ford, Maceo Baston, Rasho Nesterovic, and the rights to the 17th pick (Roy Hibbert. This trade turned into a great deal for the Pacers as Hibbert is now one of the best centers in the NBA.

Overview: Larry pulled off two trades in this draft and they were great for all sides. This is when Bird finally starts to wheel and deal in the NBA Draft. One role player and impact starter.

2009 NBA Draft: The Pacers stayed put in this draft and selected Tyler Hansbrough at pick 13 and A.J. Price at pick 52. They acquired the pick 52 from Dallas with Eddie Jones for Shawne Williams. Jones never came and played for the Pacers though.

Overview: Bird stayed put, but he got Hansbrough who's turned into a great role player and Price is a nice little player when he gets minutes off the bench. Two role players.

2010 NBA Draft: Indiana took Paul George and Lance Stephenson at pics 10 and 40 in this draft. They did make one trade for a player they eventually had to cut though.

The Pacers swapped draft rights with Oklahoma City at pick 51. The Pacers selected Magnum Rolle while Oklahoma City got Ryan Ried. Rolle was eventually cut to make room for Jeff Foster. It was very controversial why Rolle didn't make the team as he shined in the Summer League. Rolle now is not playing in the NBA.

Overview: They got two great guys oozing potential in George and Stephenson. George is now a starter and key piece to the future and Stephenson will likely take on a bigger role this upcoming season. That trade Bird made didn't really make much of a difference at all. One impact starter and one role player.

2011 NBA Draft: Indiana started off the draft with a trade that sent their pick at 15 (Kawhi Leonard) to San Antonio for George Hill. The Pacers also sent their second round pick at 42 (Davis Bertans) and the rights to Erazem Lorbek in the Hill deal as well.

Overview: This might've been the most even deal I've seen in a long time. Leonard is doing great in San Antonio and Hill is doing the same here in Indiana. Bertans and Lorbek are also two good chips for the Spurs in the future. One impact starter.

After all of this, I now can show you how Bird fares with how the stats line up. Larry had 14 total players that the Pacers drafted or traded for, if you don't count Magnum Rolle who was released before the season started. He ended up with six busts, four role players, and four impact starters. Down below, I will show you the true numbers in percentage form.

Before I reveal you the numbers, here's Frank Vogel talking about the Plumlee pick to ESPN:

Busts: 42.9%

Role Players: 28.6%

Impact Starters: 28.6%

With these two picks of Plumlee and Johnson we don't know how they will be yet. By my rough number crunching, it seems like the Pacers will get likely a bust and a role players with Bird's final draft. Let's just hope that are two draft picks don't have the same fate. Do you think Plumlee or Johnson will turn out to be busts? Will they be great role players for us? Express your opinion of our draft by commenting. Let's hope we had a good draft with Larry Bird's draft finale.

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