Three key questions of the Indiana Pacers season

Three key questions of the Indiana Pacers season

A team still punished for injuries pins its hopes on an old acquaintance and an extraordinary rookie

Manager Nate Bjorkgren’s season premiere has seen his ups and downs with a team Indiana Pacers Talented full of young veterans looking to sustain a series of vital post-season journeys since 2015.

But the road was not easy with injuries Miles Turner And TJ Warren and a confrontation against the Washington Wizards in play that knocked them out of the next round.

However, the 2021-22 season that begins on October 20 against Charlotte HornetsThe arrival of a new Director in his third step through the franchise (as Assistant and Director) and the acquisition of players willing to be recognized in the Central Division of the Eastern Mediterranean Conference brings with them high expectations and many important questions for the near future.

Is Rick Carlisle what you need to get to the next level?

With Bjorkgren returning to his assistant job with the Toronto Raptors, General Manager Chad Buchanan and President Kevin Pritchard pin their hopes on Rick CarlisleA longtime acquaintance of the franchise, he was an assistant to Larry Bird from 1997 to 2000 and as a manager from 2003 to 2007.

A lot has changed since then. There is no longer Ron Artist or “Malice At The Palace”. It’s a new phase as the champion captain’s growth with the Dallas Mavericks in 2011 led him to be considered one of the best players off the bench.

But unlike in the Mavs, where there was always a main character like Dirk Nowitzki And in Luka Doncic’s last seasons, the Pacers weren’t a team “centered around the stars” And he must rely on the game as a whole to achieve the set goals, despite having Domantas Sabonis who manages to lead the team.

Will injuries give you a break in the season?

Injuries have been a hot topic in recent seasons for the Pacers. Victor Oladipo, who became the main character, played only 64 games from 2018 to 2020 before he was traded. Last season, the problems of Miles Turner, TJ Warren and Caris Levert with a mass in his kidney appeared to affect the team in the final phase of the season and in play against the Wizards.

2021 does not start well for the team with TJ Warren (left foot), Caris Levert (lower back), Kelan Martin (hamstring), all that and several doubts about Justin Holiday (with an ankle problem coming from pre-season), Jeremy Lamb (wrist) and Malcolm Brogdon Perhaps due to discomfort in the left shoulder.

¿Chris Duarte Will it be as good as it looks?

Everything seems to indicate that it is. And the injuries listed above could be so key that enjoying the Dominicans’ early season minutes isn’t the usual burden for an NBA novice.

Already in pre-season he was the mainstay in several matches and Carlisle also tried to use Puerto Plata as the team’s starting goalkeeper, a role that would come in handy if Brogdon’s absence continued for a long time.

Duarte, 24, is an unusual beginner, but commented ESPN Digital Before being selected in the NBA Draft, “If you’re a team looking to win now, pick me,” otherwise he’s not the man. And that’s exactly what the Pacers are looking for, to win now and get back into the Eastern Conference again.

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Oliver Walton

"Pro alcohol addict. Bacon scholar. Award-winning beer fan. Gamer. Social media expert. Zombie guru."

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