An interesting week awaits the Pacers with the NBA draft lottery, NBA combine and high profile playoff teams making changes after losing.
Oh, please, please, please bring Dan Burke back. Remember TJ Warren, you know that guy that got spotty minutes while the Suns rode into the Denver sunset? What was TJ’s big knock when he first came to Indy? He couldn’t play D. Then he met D. Burke and became a pretty good defender, if memory serves me. Dan, in my opinion is probably the best defensive coach in the league. I’m sure with Dan back home and Jerace Walker in a Pacer uniform we will be well on our way to where we need to be. If we can combine our picks to move up and get another pick that could land a Chris Murray or even G.G. Jackson (who seems to be falling in everyone’s mock) would give us enough to grow this team organically. Which I believe, is the best way to go.
Not worrying about players to target until after tonight. The importance of the lottery and that 6.8% chance can’t be understated here. I can talk myself into any of the forwards in our most likely range, Walker, Whitmore, or Hendricks. BUT IF, IF, IF the organization gets its first ever #1….everything changes. Priorities and players to pursue goes out the window. Timelines get real cloudy, accelerate but also wait and see. Le Pacers can actually be found on national TV. Kids outside of 317 start wearing blue and gold. As well as Jarace Walker fits next to MT and what the team needs, Myles at the rim next to an 8’ wingspanned alien is what dreams (and the rest of the league’s nightmares) are made of. That same 7’5” Create-A-Player running offensive sets with Hali will fill the Fieldhouse with fainted Hoosiers. Get out your rabbits foot, lucky socks, cross your fingers, plead with the Almighty to get Wemby in Indy.
(Dream scenario: also nab Coulibaly. Great perimeter defender and Vic’s current teammate. Let’s put the French back in French Lick!)
Regardless of how conference champ games go, the offseason figures to highlight a lot of star player movement. Irving, Harden, Towns, Embid, DeRozan, Beal, Lillard; several from this group have a good chance of changing teams this offseason. Plus, there is the franchise-altering draft featuring Wemby. The NBA is at a changing-of-the-guard moment, and it is quite exciting.
Jaylen Brown seems like the answer to me. He’ll get the super max and Boston will drown in salary. He also doesn’t seem thrilled to be there. Pay the man in Indy. We’ve got pieces that could help Boston stay competitive and replenish their draft capital. Trade a young guy or two and some picks and swaps for him. Signing Draymond on top of that would make us a competitor. Hali, Math, Brown, Green, and Turner. That could win the east.