Hansbrough Debuts Tonight

He is widely regarded as one of the greatest college basketball players in ACC, and possibly NCAA history.

His work ethic is tenacious, he has a passion for the game not seen in a long time. It showed during the four years of school.

He is bringing that same passion to the pros, yet nobody is giving him a chance.

Except for Larry Bird.

When the NBA Hall of Famer drafted Tyler Hansbrough with the 13th pick in the NBA Draft this year to the Indiana Pacers, he saw a player that reminded him of someone familiar in his playing days: himself.

Hansbrough took the North Carolina Tar Heels to Detroit and the Final Four and won a National Championship this past year, but was widely regarded as a great college player, but not a good pro. Many feel that he would be overmatched by the bigger and stronger men of the NBA. He was out for the first week of the regular season due to a right shin injury in the preseason, but is fully healed and ready to go in his first action of the season.

Pacers head coach Jim O’Brien has said that the plan is to have Hansbrough as a reserve and play him for around 16 minutes so he can get used to the NBA pace and not rush him in too quickly. He is also going to be playing since starting PF Troy Murphy is sitting out with a bruised lower back. Indiana will turn to a smaller line up by putting starting small forward Danny Granger at power forward and starting shooting guard Dahntay Jones at small forward, or part of a three-guard lineup.

Hansbrough will not make too much noise initially, as he gets used to the NBA game, but expect to see him make a little bit more noise as the time wears on and if he puts up the energy and intensity he had in college, there is no reason to doubt the ability he will have in the NBA. If not a starter, he will be a decent 6th man off the bench.

Most great college players have an average impact, they come once in a generation, Kareem, Magic, and Bird.

Perhaps Hansbrough can be added to that list. Only time will tell.

    • Fred
    • November 6th, 2009

    Is Tyler in a commercial searching for a lost dog using camera phones

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