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IC Cold Links: Murphy Plays Through Trade Rumors As Deadline Approaches

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Travis Diener loves telling his teammates the latest gossip.

Whenever the injury-prone point guard sees another trade rumor swirling around the NBA about the future of Troy Murphy in Indianapolis, Diener makes sure the power forward hears about it. For Murphy, new rumors and evidence suggesting that he may be on the last leg of his tour in Indy continues to gain steam with merely three weeks remaining before the Feb. 18 trading deadline.

After the Pacers were crushed by the Cavs Friday night at Conseco "Reggie Miller" Fieldhouse, Murphy was asked about the possibiility of landing in Cleveland for the remainder of the season.

"It's a business and I understand there's a possibility that I could be moved," Murphy said. "I can't get away from the ongoing rumors because Travis (Diener) is right next to me (in the locker room) and he is always informing me of what's being talked about."

Glad to see Travis trying to lighten the mood a little in a increasingly dark locker room.

But, there isn't a guarantee that Murphy will be packing his bags by the end of the month. Mike Wells reports in his IndyStar article that the Pacers may have to hold on to Murphy based on the fact of injuries. Right now, Tyler Hansbrough and Jeff Foster are injured with uncertain return dates. And if Murphy is traded without an acceptable power forward in return, the Pacers would be short in the position. I'll say this, if they don't trade Murphy because Hansbrough has an ear infection for two months, then management needs to be dropped immediately. That's unacceptable. Play Diener at power forward for two months. That'd be a helluva small-ball lineup.

Wells also added some news about trade talks surrounding T.J. Ford. He noted that it has become increasingly difficult to trade Ford due to the point guard planning on picking up his $8.5 million player option this summer for one more year. Apparently, Ford plans on picking up on the option no matter what, and it's hard to blame him. He wouldn't make anywhere close to that money on the open free-agent market.

Check out the jump for links concerning last night's loss to the Cavs.