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Pacers Notebook: Tyrese Haliburton commits to play in World Cup with USA Basketball
Pre-draft workouts continues, Haliburton on the finals feel, why Carlisle attended Game 2, a former Pacers coach lands in Phoenix and Catchings & cornhole.
Tyrese Haliburton has already had an active offseason and his schedule will soon get even busier.
As first reported by Shams Charania, Haliburton is committed to compete in the FIBA World Cup in August — along with Anthony Edwards, Austin Reaves, Mikal Bridges, Bobby Portis and Jalen Brunson. The list will continue to grow, and participants have not yet been made official by USA Basketball.
Haliburton confirmed his participation on June 7.
Playing in the World Cup means a shortened offseason for him and the rest of the NBA players who will proudly represent their country.
Daniel Theis is playing for Germany.
Oshae Brissett will be a free agent in July, but said during exit interviews: “Definitely going to play with (Team Canada) this summer. I’m definitely there.” Mathurin and Nembhard aren’t expected to play.
Other possibilities: Is Myles Turner brought back for a second World Cup? Chris Duarte could play with the Dominican Republic, plus former Pacers Domantas Sabonis (Lithuania) and Goga Bitadze (Georgia) with their countries.
Team USA will hold training camp in Las Vegas, then play an exhibition game against Puerto Rico in Las Vegas on Aug. 7 before heading to Spain.
They are scheduled to play New Zealand (Aug. 26), Greece (Aug. 28) and Jordan (Aug. 30) in the first round of the Group Phase.
⛹️Run of Pre-Draft Workouts Continues
The Pacers have a busy week ahead full of draft workouts. Including today’s, they are up to 31 prospects over six workouts. The highest-rated potential pick was Villanova’s Cam Whitmore. (Watch his post-workout interview)
Haliburton’s was not at some of the workouts last week because he was on vacation. Otherwise, he is attending when he's in town.
And once again, I’m posting video interviews of all the key draft hopefuls here. Players like Whitmore, Leonard Miller, Andre Jackson Jr., Julian Strawther, etc.
ICYMI: Former Pacer Shayne Whittington was at Friday’s workout after being hired on as a basketball assistant for the season.
🏆Rookie Experiences NBA Finals
Bennedict Mathurin was in Denver for a few days last week. He talked with his peers at media day and then attended Game 1, one of four rookies selected to serve as a media correspondent.
Did you know he wants to work in media or be an actor after basketball? That was new to me too. He revealed that, discussed his rookie season and the Pacers’ future on one media appearance.
As competitive as Mathurin is, that had to light a fire under him seeing those guys play on the ultimate stage. That’s where he wants to be.
Speaking of NBA Finals, I agree with Haliburton’s thought during Game 2. He wrote “Put the trophy at half court and make the scoreboard bigger/feel like the finals.”
I was just having this conversation with a friend in basketball during Game 1. It didn’t feel big. It didn’t feel like the NBA Finals where the Larry O’Brien trophy was on the line. Not even close.
An enhancement starts with putting the trophy back at half court, upping the TV broadcast — and not advertising summer league, games amongst newcomers in July, during the biggest games of the year.
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🏆Why Rick Carlisle was at Game 2
The Pacers had representation at the second consecutive finals game, and this time it was head coach Rick Carlisle.
In addition to leading the Pacers, he’s also the president of the National Basketball Coaches Association. As part of those responsibilities, he was on hand to celebrate Rick Adelman, the recipient of the 2023 Chuck Daly Lifetime Achievement Award.
Before the game, Adelman answered questions from reporters at a press conference about the award and his career in coaching with Carlisle and NBCA Executive Director David Fogel by his side.
Adelman coached in the NBA for 29 seasons, including 23 as a head coach for five different franchises: Portland, Golden State, Sacramento, Houston and Minnesota.
“Rick Adelman’s NBA coaching career has been highlighted by innovation, integrity, and excellence,” Carlisle said. “His teams always played to their strengths, and Rick always found subtle ways to reinvent NBA basketball to help his players thrive. His quiet, unassuming nature belies his impact as one of the great NBA coaches of all time.”
For those living on Dan Burke Appreciation Island, you have Adelman to thank. Adelman is his uncle and he helped DB into the NBA by hiring him as an hourly employee in Portland to chart games back in 1985.
1️⃣And Then There Was One
The coaching carousel has been an interesting one this offseason. Five jobs have been filled and just one remains: Toronto.
And it’s hard to get a grasp on where the Raptors are headed because there are many paths they could take. They have several players that are strong enough assets to fetch a sizable return. It does feel like a shakeup of some kind is needed, more than just the coaching staff.
The latest job filled was Phoenix’s and new owner Mat Ishbia hired Frank Vogel. The former Pacers coach is now rejuvenated after sitting out of coaching this past season. It was the right call for him to wait until a quality job arose and to not settle for a top assistant gig.
This will be Vogel’s fourth head-coaching stint — Pacers, Magic, Lakers and Suns — and the second one in a row where he didn’t get to select his top assistant. That’s the only thing I don’t like about how it went down.
It was also stunning to see the salary the Pistons offered up to entice Monty Williams to Detroit: $78.5 million over six years, per Woj, the largest deal in league history. That’s an average of more than $13 million per year. Sheesh!
Here’s who filled the other four openings:
Ime Udoka, Houston
Adrian Griffin, Milwaukee
Nick Nurse, Philadelphia
Monty Williams, Detroit
📅Haliburton’s Youth Camp Moved — and Moved Up
If you already signed up your kid(s) or still want to, be sure to take note of the schedule change to Tyrese Haliburton’s youth camp in July.
It was moved up a week, to July 15 and 16, and will now be held at the The Factory D1, which is just west of the Indianapolis Motor Speedway on 16th St. The change was presumably made because the following weekend will be his last free one before joining USA Basketball.
Be sure to save $20 at sign-up by using my promo code, “SCOTT.”
⛹️♀️Tamika Catchings Competes … In Cornhole
Over the weekend, Catch was in Mesa, Arizona to participate in the American Cornhole League’s Pro-Am tournament — the Johnsonville SuperHole IV — for charity.
The prelims went down Friday afternoon, then aired Sunday afternoon on ESPN2.
She was paired with a professional player, Corey Gilbert. Other Olympians played as well: Natalie Coughlin, Sanya Richards-Ross and Kim Glass.
It was Richards-Ross advancing with partner Moses Zazueta.
(Happy Monday. If you made it all the way through, let me know in the comments. Cheers!)