The Pacers' marketing slogan this year is, "Ignite the Passion. Restore the Pride." Not only is this serve as a catchy slogan, but also a to do list for the front office.
So far this offseason, they've done their part to trigger the ignition switch in fans. The most obvious change has been in the communication directed at fans from Herb Simon, Jim Morris, Larry Bird, David Morway and Jim O'Brien. Seems like once a week, one of these guys writes about the direction the team is going and the reasoning behind their decisions.
The latest missive comes from David Morway as he takes us inside the Pacers' draft room and offers a little bit on the process he and Larry Bird went through to revamp the roster with trades and the draft. Here's a taste.
In preparation for the draft, Larry and I had conversations with almost every team in regard to trades for players, picks and possibly trading up or trading down in the draft. After those conversations had taken place, we had a fairly good idea with which teams we might be able to execute a trade.
Heading into draft night, the player we targeted was Brandon Rush. There was a sense publicly that we were targeting D.J. Augustin, but because of the trade talks involving Jermaine O’Neal which centered on trading for an established point guard, we were actually focused on Brandon. In the end, we were fortunate to get two established point guards in T.J. Ford and Jarrett Jack.
Anyone who wants to criticize the recent moves better get it on record quickly otherwise it will be weak 20/20 hindsight. One thing no one will be able to say next year is, "What were they thinking?"