Bird: "We've Got a Busy Week Ahead of Us"

As we’ve discussed, there’s been a lot of action inside Conseco Fieldhouse of late. Jarrett Jack and Marquis Daniels have left the team. Tyler Hansbrough, AJ Price  and Josh McRoberts got to know and play with Brandon Rush and Roy Hibbert in Summer League. And Dahntay Jones and Earl Watson have joined the franchise.

Despite all the transactions, Pacers President Larry Bird found some time to chat with Derek Schultz on the Zone on XL950 about everything going on in Pacerland. Here’s link to the full audio, (via Indy Cornrows) but, honestly, Larry didn’t have a ton to say aside from (and possibly including) the following:

On losing Jarrett Jack:

“Jarrett was great here. He did everything that we asked of him. He’s a great young man with a lot of skill. But that offer sheet Toronto gave him was a little too much for us at this time.”

On improving the defense this off-season:

“With the addition of Hansbrough, AJ Price and Dahntay Jones, we feel that we really upgraded our defense, and hopefully [they'll help] pick up the rest of the guys and we’ll play better on the defensive end. We’re going to score points — we know that — but we’ve got to stop other teams.”

On Derek Schultz asking him whether or not he was surprised by Tyler’s good play in Summer League:

“Not at all, Derek I’ve been watching this young man since high school. He’s a battler. He’s going to give you everything he’s got every night. He’s going to improve because of his ability to work hard and, I think he’s going to be a great fit for the Indiana Pacers.”

On AJ Price:

“He played at Connecticut — played against tough competition. I think it’s just going to take him time to get a feel of the groove — of the speed of the NBA game. But once he gets it, he’s a smart player and I think he’ll adjust just fine.”

On Bob Kravitz’s article about the Pacers highly caucasian make-up:

“I don’t pay much attention to it. I do my job — try to get the best players we possibly can get. Obviously Bob wanted to get a little headlines for himself.”

On the progress of Brandon Rush and Roy Hibbert:

“I expect big things out of both of them. I don’t expect them to make All-Star teams this year, but just as long as we get great improvements each time we go out. They got a lot of experience last year and, as we go forward, I think you’ll see them play more and more — and improve along the way.”

On his overall plan for the franchise:

“We’re trying to get a lot of young players mixed in with our veterans and trying to get a good mesh here. Trying to change the culture and get a good locker room — we had an excellent locker room last year — and build upon that.”

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Tags: Aj Price Brandon Rush Dahntay Jones Earl Watson Jarrett Jack Marquis Daniels Overly Caucasion Insinuation Roy Hibbert Tyler Hansbrough

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