Well its time for the Pacers to head back to the United Center. We played our two pre-season games against them and both teams weren’t really in basketball shape yet. Tonight’s contest will tell us a lot more about this young Pacers team.
I’ve gotten an opportunity to catch the Pacers a few times this season and they have (not surprisingly) been beating most of the teams they are supposed to beat. If they want to truly make the leap and be considered an elite team, they must continue. They had a CAKE schedule to start:
You kind of think if they’d beaten Detroit and Sacramento (both games just seemed to get away from them late), they’d be 13-2 right now.
How they’ve been getting it done:
- Hibbert’s got a stronger post-game this year.
- David West is another big athletic body/scorer that the Pacers need.
- Collison is not the most talked about, but he’s the most improved Pacer in my opinion. He plays with a better pace. Is more patient and either he’s taking better shots or his FG% has improved from last season.
- They simply believe that they can compete and beat the best teams in the league, and that’s a big part of the battle.
I’m personally more impressed with Philly’s start to the year. The Pacers can still be overwhelmed and blown out of basketball games. They are starting to gain the discipline and resilience needed to win consistently in this league, but they are not there yet. Orlando pulled away from them last night and they had no answer. They were unable, as the momentum shifted, to patiently make the correct plays to fight their way back into the game. Some nights, they are better at doing that then others. Their wins against GSW and LAL can be attributed as much to those team’s failures/implosions down the stretch as Indiana’s will to win.
It will be interesting to see how physically they decide to play the Bulls at this stage of the season and I am dying to take notes on how the Bulls respond to traps on D.Rose. If the Pacers put two and three on the ball, God help me they better make them pay… This Bulls team has played without Derrick for a nice little stretch and should feel more comfortable figuring things out when the basketball is not in their star player’s hands. The Pacers traps are mild compared to what Miami is going to do so this is a good test.
|Probable Bulls Starters | Roster and Statistics
Guard 1 Derrick Rose 6-3 | 190
Guard 32 Richard Hamilton 6-7 | 193
Forward 11 Ronnie Brewer 6-7 | 227
Forward 5 Carlos Boozer 6-9 | 266
Center 13 Joakim Noah 6-11 | 232
Probable Pacers Starters | Roster and Statistics
Guard 2 Darren Collison 6-0 | 170
Guard 24 Paul George 6-8 | 215
Forward 33 Danny Granger 6-9 | 228
Forward 21 David West 6-9 | 240
Center 55 Roy Hibbert 7-2 | 260
I’m unfortunately out of pocket for this game and WILL NOT be in-game tweeting this one. I’ll be back in time for Clippers/Lakers and will catch up with all my #Bullsfam then.
Take care Bulls fans and I’ll see you on the other side… Shouts to Luol Deng, we love you buddy! Take care of your body…