|2011-12 Team Rating|
|9th Overall||10th Overall|
2011-12 Season Stats
Re-signing Roy Hibbert was the signature move here, not because he is anyone's ideal at center but because, in the current NBA, it's hard to find a 25-year-old All-Star who stands 7-foot-2 and wants to play in Indianapolis.
No question anymore who the starting point guard is; George Hill has a fat new contract, Darren Collison is gone. Lofty ambitions about landing Eric Gordon were snuffed, so Paul George needs to grab hold at shooting guard.
Dahntay Jones was valuable as a rugged defender against superstar wings, but the Pacers felt they needed more sand up front with Ian Mahinmi, bundling Jones to Dallas with Collison for the 6-foot-11 Frenchman.
D.J. Augustin was added to back up Hill. Rookie Miles Plumlee could get minutes opened by Jeff Foster and Louis Amundson and Gerald Green, well, he's just a gamble.
Frank Vogel has moved the Pacers along in each of the past two seasons, and now he'll likely keep Brian Shaw on his staff after head coaching gigs didn't go Shaw's way.
There was another transaction of sorts that mattered for Indiana this summer: It got Donnie Walsh back and added Kevin Pritchard for the front office, but Larry Bird resigned and David Morway was not brought back. This team was built by Bird and, by the time it pushed Miami to six games in the East playoffs, he seemed confident of its short-term future.
But getting the Central Division handed to them by a backpedaling Chicago team is not the same thing as improving and grabbing it. Improvement must come from returnees, not summer newcomers. This will rise or fall on George, Hibbert, Hill, David West and Danny Granger.
-- Steve Aschburner
Explanation of Marking System
|Golden State Warriors||C+|
|Los Angeles Clippers||B|
|Los Angeles Lakers||A|
|New Jersey Nets||A|
|New Orleans Hornets||B+|
|New York Knicks||C|
|Oklahoma City Thunder||A|
|Portland Trail Blazers||C-|
|San Antonio Spurs||B|