Indiana Pacers: 5 Questions Left Unanswered After Pacers Preseason

Ryan Reed@@rareedBRCorrespondent IIOctober 30, 2012

Indiana Pacers: 5 Questions Left Unanswered After Pacers Preseason

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    The preseason is all about answering questions.

    For the fans it is basically to see how well your team is playing, especially rookies and newly added members of the squad.

    For coaches and members of the front office, play dictates decisions such as who is going to be cut from the team and what lineups work best, while also showing how players are developing.

    The Pacers were able to show a lot about themselves this preseason, looking strong as ever. Still, there are a few questions left unanswered. As such, this article will take a look at five important questions that the preseason failed to address.

What Will Danny Granger's Role Be This Year?

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    With the emergence of both Paul George and Roy Hibbert, Danny Granger is going to have to take a long look at his game. At this point, he may be best served as a complementary player on offense instead of the one which play revolves around.

    This transition is one of the more interesting question marks of the coming season, but was not answered in the preseason.

    Danny Granger was only able to play two games in which he averaged a mere 17 minutes per game. The good news is that Granger shot 50 percent from the field over the two games.

    Hopefully this coming season will answer questions about how willing Danny Granger is to sacrifice touches to his younger teammates since the preseason did not. If he is able to do that, the team will benefit greatly.

Can George Hill Be Effective as a Point Guard?

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    In limited minutes with the Pacers last season, George Hill was able to prove that he is a valuable asset. He averaged almost 10 points to go along with 2.9 assists and 3.0 rebounds in just over 25 minutes per game.

    The real question about Hill, however, is how well he can play point guard.

    With Darren Collison gone, the Pacers will look to Hill to be their starting point guard. While he has proved to have great ball security, George hasn't show a natural ability as a distributor. That becomes clear through his extremely low 2.9 assists per game last season.

    The preseason could have been a time for George Hill to prove that he is a solid point guard option for Indiana. Instead, he missed all of the games due to various injuries. It will be interesting to see how Hill reacts to a full-time starting job, but I'd expect to see him playing a lot of shooting guard next to D.J. Augustin.

Is Tyler Hansbrough a Good Backup for the Pacers?

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    Tyler Hansbrough is one of the more confusing players on the Indiana roster. He brings a lot of intensity off the bench and has proved to be a solid rebounder, grabbing 4.4 boards in just 21.8 minutes per game last season.

    On the flip side, Hansbrough has only shot 42.5 percent from the field for his career, an awful mark for a power forward. To go with that, Tyler has only been able to reach marks of 0.2 blocks and 0.6 steals per game, proving that he isn't very useful on the defensive end.

    Still, Hansbrough is only entering his fourth year in the league and has time to grow, right? Well, according to the preseason, apparently not.

    Psycho T was himself this preseason, grabbing an outstanding 6.7 rebounds in just over 20 minutes per game while shooting 32.6 percent to go along with 0.3 steals and 0.2 blocks per game.

    Tyler Hansbrough will be a restricted free agent after this season, so the Pacers have a decision to make. Unfortunately, he has yet to answer anyone's questions as to what choice they should make.

Will Miles Plumlee Be Able to Carve out a Role in the NBA?

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    Miles Plumlee may have been the most confusing pick in the 2012 NBA draft.

    Still, fans have to wonder if the Pacers front office saw something in the 6'11" big man from Duke that the casual observer could not.

    Unfortunately, the preseason didn't clear anything up, as Miles Plumlee was only able to get on the floor for 12.2 minutes per game.

    In that time, however, Plumlee did a few things well. He scored five points per game on 52.4 percent shooting while also averaging 1.8 rebounds and 0.6 blocks per game.

    None of these numbers are outstanding, but they don't point to a complete bust. Only time will tell whether he will pan out for the Pacers, but the preseason gave no indications as to his future.

Which Lineups Work Best for This Squad?

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    One of the most important parts of the preseason is discovering which lineups work and which do not. For instance, would Danny Granger be able to play power forward effectively for a few minutes each night?

    While the Pacers' roster remained relatively unchanged, there are a few new possibilities that could have been tried out in the preseason. Could a lineup that included Paul George, Gerald Green and Danny Granger work, and can George Hill play alongside D.J. Augustin like he did Darren Collison?

    Instead, Granger missed all but two games of the preseason, and George Hill was unable to play in any. That means that the Pacers will instead have to try out their lineups in regular season games, something which most teams would prefer to do without.

    Due to the injuries that came with the preseason, I'd look for the Pacers to try out a lot of unique lineups in the first few weeks of NBA regular season, especially with the emergence of positionless teams like the Miami Heat.


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