It's nice to exhale for a moment, isn't it?
With one move yesterday, the Indiana Pacers addressed two areas of concern that have suffocated the franchise for the past couple of years and left fans gasping for air.
The first was simply the salary cap situation which has had several clunky contracts clogging progress. With most of those big deals now classified as expiring, the Pacers were able to unload Troy Murphy's nearly $12 million salary and free up around $4 million in cap space.
The second major area of relief addressed was adding a point guard who isn't just a one-season rental or a stop-gap point guard until someone better surface. Darren Collison is a young and vibrant point guard who instantly energizes the backcourt and fits in well with the other young core pieces the Pacers have assembled.
Plus, the risk on Collison is minimal since he has three years remaining on his rookie contract. If things work out as planned, he's extremely valuable from a production per dollar view. If the worst case situation plays out and Collison doesn't pan out, his minimal salary doesn't become an anchor on the salary cap for the Pacers to move on.
So yesterday was a huge step forward for the Pacers, but there is plenty of work left to be done. I can live with James Posey's remaining contract and hope he returns this year to closer resemble the pre-knee surgery Posey that helped teams on both ends of the floor in the past. But he has to be considered one of a couple of wings on the roster that could be dealt at any t ime.
T.J. Ford is obviously going to be on the move at some point. In a story linked below and over on the Fan Posts, David Aldridge mentioned the Pacers were close to moving Ford yesterday for pure cap space in Erick Dampier's non-guaranteed salary. Talk about exhaling, the Fieldhouse would've been like an oxygen bar if that baby went through yesterday. Regardless, something will be worked out with Ford in time. But now the Pacers can remain patient, continue saying all of the right things with regard to Ford publicly while working like crazy behind the scenes to move him or buy him out.
It will happen in due time and the franchise will take another step forward in a positive direction. Just like they did yesterday.
After the jump, a bevy of links with reports, analysis, video and audio about the trade along with updates on Team USA, Isiah Thomas and Earl Watson.
- PACERS VIDEO: Collison trade press conference
PACERS: Collison point guard of future -- and present
Conrad Brunner covers it all with regard to the Pacers trade yesterday.
Pacers acquire point guard Darren Collison
Mike Wells reports on all of the story angles from the deal yesterday.
New Pacers point guard Darren Collison has a passion for the game
Jeff Rabjohns checks in with Collison's college coach Ben Howland who describes the type of player we all hope Collison will be in Indy.
Bird and Morway's patience pays off with great deal
Bob Kravitz applauds the first big move of the summer by Larry Bird and David Morway.
- Michael Grady pats Larry Bird on the back for the the deal yesterday along with the way he's handled business this summer.
- Check out JMV's podcasts for interviews with Chad Ford and David Morway. Ford's effusive praise of the deal for the Pacers is enough to make you want to go buy some tickets.
- Mark Patrick talked to Mark Boyle and David Morway yesterday afternoon, although the Morway podcast isn't up yet I'm assuming it will be some time today.
NBA.com: Why they did it: Breaking down the four-team trade
David Aldridge breaks down the deal and offers some info on additional negotiations that would've moved T.J. Ford.
Pacers got their point guard
Mike Wells offers some thoughts on the Pacers deal for Collison.
Chris Paul, Hornets should be happy with trade
Charley Rosen also likes the deal for the Pacers. I like how he described Collison: "...young, eager, talented and coachable." Eager is a great descriptor.
In filling power forward hole, Nets bring Troy Murphy back home
Dave D'Alessandro reports on Murph returning home to play for the Nets. He heard the news from Hawaii where he was vacationing, which is about perfect.
NBA Player Earl Watson Accuses Wife of Vicious Attack - Earl Watson Divorce
Former Pacers point guard, Earl Watson had a bad day yesterday getting caught up in the TMZ hollywood machine.