I see no reason why you couldn't leave the water pan out if you wanted to. I've even seen people on here hang meat it them like a PBC.
Lang 36 patio
18.5" Weber Smokey Mountain
22.5" Weber OTG with Cajun Bandit Conversion Kit
Char-Griller Akorn with side cart
1999 Weber Master-Touch - bent but not broken
14.5" Weber Smokey Joe Silver