NBA reporters and their sources had the Indiana Pacers in several rumors on trade deadline day, but when 3 p.m. ET passed, the Pacers remained the same team that destroyed the Knicks on Wednesday night.
According to the trade chatter on Twitter, Gerald Green, D.J. Augustin and Tyler Hansbrough along with a draft pick were the available assets the Pacers discussed with other teams. The most intriguing name the Pacers were reportedly targeting was Orlando Magic guard J.J. Redick. Excuse me, make that Milwaukee Bucks guard J.J. Redick. In a last minute deal, Redick was swapped to Milwaukee where the Bucks may need to buy a few more basketballs and space around the arc.
I was all in favor of adding Redick to the mix via a trade. His scoring and passing ability would've bolstered the second unit immediately and made it easier for Lance Stephenson to make plays with the second unit whenever Granger is ready to return as a starter.
Of course, just how hard the Pacers pursued a Redick deal remains a mystery and according to Mike Wells, Donnie Walsh and Kevin Pritchard didn't appear engaged in any last minute deadline dealings, instead watching practice and then leaving separately.
Frank Vogel spoke about his post-deadline team (via Fox59's Jeremiah Johnson) joking about the new small forward wearing no. 33 whom they are looking forward to adding to the rotation any day now.
"We're looking at Danny Granger as our trade deadline acquisition," Vogel said. "But we love this team. We love the depth, really the depth at all positions. We think our starting five is as good as any starting five in the NBA and we're looking forward to what we can do down the stretch."
Vogel's words and the front office's deeds today indicate that the team is counting on Granger to make an impact on the Pacers over the remainder of the season. It also raises the stakes for the second unit, coincidentally coming off of their best performance of the season last night against the Knicks. Their play in the first half not only maintained the solid play from the starters but actually expanded the lead.
It was certainly a nice game to build on for the reserves and by adding Granger to the mix, playing time will have to be earned which should bring out the competitive fire in those guys off the bench that come ready to play each night.