The Pacers return home after their 1-2 road trip to play the Brooklyn Nets for the first of three Wednesday home games that make up the home schedule for the rest of March. The Pacers have to make themselves scarce the rest of the week for the NCAA tournament which will have games at Bankers Life Fieldhouse over the next couple of weeks.
While the Nets arrive at BLF sizzling, the Pacers won’t find any comfort on the road with a twin bill in Miami and another game at Milwaukee to wrap up a brutal stretch of games that started against the Lakers after the All-Star game.
The Pacers showed up well on the road, putting themselves in position to win all three games until faltering in the fourth quarter. Fortunately, they survived the fade in Phoenix by establishing a big enough lead to hold off the Suns in the end.
The key observation in those fourth quarter issues was defensive struggles (and turnovers) while Myles Turner sat on the bench during a reserve rotation. Turner continues to play some of the most impactful ball of his career even if his overall stats don’t show it on a box score. But league observers are noticing his play which makes Turner a hot topic in trade rumors.
J. Michael from the Indy Star reported on Tuesday that not only is Turner drawing attention, but he (J. Michael) named names.
The New York Knicks, L.A. Lakers, L.A. Clippers, Charlotte Hornets and New Orleans Pelicans are among those who have explored whether the Pacers are willing to part with the league’s leading shot-blocker, league sources tell IndyStar.
With the value Turner is bringing right now, any trade offer would have to be strong, something it doesn’t appear that the Lakers and Clippers could pull off. But regardless of the offer, were the Pacers to deal Turner it would be from a seller’s position at the deadline and not a buyer trying to bolster the team for a playoff run. With the trade deadline next week (Mar. 25) the front office could have some challenging decisions to make, particularly if the losses keep mounting over the next few games before the break.
Since the Nets have plenty of firepower in Harden and Kyrie, the Pacers will have to play at a high level to win at home, but without Kevin Durant or Blake Griffin a win is there for the taking with a quality effort for four quarters.
After the three-game roadie, we know the Pacers can do it for three quarters, but they need to figure out the fourth to keep building with the squad they have.
Feel free to share any trade machine work in the comments.
Check out the links: