Pacers endorse Brian Shaw: “he’s a champion”

Brian Shaw, Lance Stephenson

Pacers assistant Brian Shaw coaching Brooklyn-born guard Lance Stephenson. (AP)

Indiana Pacers assistant coach Brian Shaw is reportedly one of Brooklyn’s top candidates to replace P.J. Carlesimo as head coach of the Brooklyn Nets, and Pacers players have nothing but good things to say about him.

Pacers guard and the NBA’s Most Improved Player Paul George gushed about Shaw’s pedigree and command. “He’s been a champion. He’s been a champion as a coach and as a player,” George told Bontemps. “So everything he says has value, and he knows what it takes. Besides being around Kobe, he’s been around Penny (Hardaway), he’s been around Larry (Bird). … He’s been around some guys that’s been (elite) guys in this league. I think just his presence, being at practice and his whole mentality. … He’s a champion.”

“He’s motivated me,” Pacers guard and Brooklyn native Lance Stephenson told Tim Bontemps of the New York Post. “My first two years, I couldn’t hit threes. By playing with him in a little 3-point game and getting with him and giving me the confidence to knock down big shots, he helped me a lot with the confidence in my jump shot.”

Stephenson shot 0-5 and 4-30 from three-point range in his first two seasons, but he’s improved to 62-188 (.330) this season, and an effective .367 from the corners.

Shaw enjoyed a playing career for seven teams from 1988-2003 before joining the Los Angeles Lakers as an assistant in 2004, working under Phil Jackson for all but one season of his tenure. In 2011, he left Los Angeles with Jackson, joining the Pacers organization as an assistant.

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