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IC Cold Links: Pacers Learning About Troy Murphy's Trade Value And Life Without Jeff Foster

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Mike Wells brings all kinds of glad tidings to Pacers fans in his latest Pacers Insider post.

First we learn that the dreams of Troy Murphy to Cleveland for Zydrunas Ilgauskas and his expiring contract haven't gone anywhere because the Pacers are asking for too many goodies.

The Pacers wanted the Cavaliers to give up forward J.J. Hickson, center Zydrunas Ilgauskas and multiple draft picks for Murphy, the source said.

Hey, I'm all for asking for the moon and I'm sure dealing from a position of strength has to be fun for Larry Bird and David Morway, but  now that there's room for negotiation don't let it die. I'm assuming that's the case since there's still over two week before the trade deadline, so if the Cavs settle on Murphy and the Pacers get anything beyond Ziggy's contract, it will be worth it.

Next we learn that Jeff Foster is going to Los Angeles, although not in a trade but to see a back specialist.

Foster is not expected to play this season and is likely headed for surgery. John Hollinger mentioned this when discussing the Denver Nuggets and why they've abandoned their pursuit of Foster.

So what does this mean for the future of Foster?

Well, if all goes well and Foster returns fit to play next year he will be even more valuable considering his expiring contract. If not, and he ends up retiring this summer the Pacers could get some cap relief since he hasn't played since December. Larry Coon explains:

There is one exception whereby a player can continue to receive his salary, but the salary is not included in the team's team salary. This is when a player is forced to retire for medical reasons and a league-appointed physician confirms that he is medically unfit to continue playing. There is a waiting period of one year following the injury or illness before a team can apply for this salary cap relief. If the waiting period expires mid-season (on any date prior to the last day of the regular season), then the player's entire salary for that season is removed from the team's team salary. For example, in March 2003 the Knicks were allowed to remove Luc Longley's entire 2002-03 salary from their books (and since the luxury tax is based on the team salary as of the last day of the regular season, the Knicks avoided paying any tax on Longley's salary). This provision can also be used when a player dies while under contract.

Wells tops off all of this glorious news with a sprinkling of comments from Reggie Miller. While discussing the impact of the Gilbert Arenas suspension and shenanigans in Washington, ol' 31 reminds us how the Pacers continue to feel the impact of the brawl.

Yeah, we know.

A few more links of interest: