In his latest Pacers Insider post, Mike Wells updates us on Jamaal Tinsley's status and the search for a power forward.
In past radio discussions, Wells has indicated that Tinsley's weight ballooned toward the end of the offseason. Now he reports that folks within the organization confirm he's been shedding that weight this summer.
Also, while they'd like to add an upgrade at power forward, they're not against mixing and matching the front court from the group of Jeff Foster, Troy Murphy, Rasho Nesterovic, Roy Hibbert, Maceo Baston and Josh McRoberts. Plus Shawne Williams or Danny Granger could slide to PF in small ball situations. This makes me pretty happy because I'm not interested in tying up any money in a middle-of-the-road type of PF. Flexibility isn't far away, but as of today, the cap situation is tight.
Back to Tinsley, Wells brought up the option of Tinsley actually playing for the Pacers this year despite all the harsh rhetoric which would seem to make it impossible. Bob Kravitz and Jim O'Brien have both said they'd walk to Kokomo if Tinsley started the season on the roster. Since Bird appears set on not buying out Tinsley, how else could he "earn his money." As Wells put it:
I don't see Tinsley wearing a Pacers uniform again, especially after some of the comments Bird and coach Jim O'Brien made in the past month, but Bird did say players should earn their money.
There's no doubt in my mind that if the Pacers couldn't move him and Tinsley showed up in stellar shape that Bird wouldn't be opposed to letting him compete for minutes. There are two problems with that theory, though. First, it would seem to undermine JOB's authority with the team since he's basically said he's done relying on Tins. Also, Tinsley would have to show up in stellar shape. That would be a surprise.
Everyone knows I love Tinsley's game, but even I have a hard time accepting the scenario of seeing 11 in the blue and gold next year. The team is trying to move into a new era and that has to be without Tinsley in tow.