Here Comes the Season. And Roster Moves

The NBA is back. And the Pacers are about to shake up their roster somehow.

Whether that means signing the likes of Marc Gasol, Nene, David West, Jamal Crawford or using the luxury of cap space to make a trade, it is certain that something interesting involving the Pacers WILL GO DOWN in the next few weeks. In fact, the Pacers are so far below the salary cap that they figure to be involved in almost every rumor we hear about (see: Rondo, Rajon) regardless of the likelihood of any deal materializing. Due to the fact that the new CBA is expected to retain the same silly salary-matching restrictions for trades involving any team over the cap, Indiana is in the enviable position to help facilitate any major deal as a third party.

There are many course of action the team could take. Word from Mike Wells of the Indy Star, and others, is that the team is interested in Nene but doesn’t want to overpay (which some team almost certainly will) but squeamish on David West given the fact that he is 31 and recently removed from ACL surgery and the Pacers won’t be real Eastern Conference Finals contenders for at least another few years. (Although some people think the West injury risk trope is overblown.) Additionally, Wells has reported that the “Pacers are more likely to make trades then spend a lot of money on free agents,” because they don’t want to overspend.

Of course, there are also question marks regarding the guys already on the roster. Who starts at point: incumbent Darren Collison or NBA champion George Hill? Can Tyler Hansbrough be a starting power forward in this league if team head honcho Larry Bird doesn’t acquire a more-proven big man? Will the Pacers use their “amnesty” (a clause in the new Collective Bargaining Agreement that will allow each team to dump one player’s salary from being included on their cap) on Dahntay Jones?

Lastly, what will the schedule look like? We know that teams will have between one and three back-to-back-to-back playing nights — among other logistically complicated/grueling scenarios — on their itinerary this season. Will the Pacers be favored or worse off compared to their peers?

As we enter this stretch of the unknown, there are many more questions than certainties. But the only question that truly matters — will Indiana play basketball this year? — does have a definitive answer: yes. So until something bad happens, just be happy the team is back.

Additionally, Bird and GM David Morway are holding a press conference in a bout 20 minutes. So perhaps they will have a few more answers for us.

Tags: David Morway David West Larry Bird Nene

  • Troy

    I’m real excited for Pacers BB! I think the Pacers are one really good move away from being legit contenders in Eastern Conf. If the Pacers could pull a trade off to Bring Rondo in that would be BIG!!! They still need to find a way to keep most of their core guys in the trade. From what I am hearin CP3 doesn’t want to sign with the Celtics, so it sounds like the 3 team deal isn’t going work. Pacers still have a lot of trade bait with a lot of Money they can spend. I’m anxious to see what Larry and the Boys can pull off.

  • JT’s Hoops Blog

    What the Pacers need is a starting quality shooting guard to play alongside Darren Collison. Their starting front court looks rather solid with Granger, Hansbrough and Hibbert especially since Frank Vogel took over. Hopefully they can build on their success last season and improve. Other than the Chicago Bulls, the Pacers have NO real competition for second place.

  • JRC

    Glad to see the season starting soon. This is the most exciting start of a season for the Pacers in at least five years. It would be nice to find a shooting guard that can create their own shot, but those guys don’t grow on trees.

    As far as no competition for second place – I’d watch out for Milwaukee. They struggled last season, but the year before they showed much promise. I think making the playoffs again is a good goal for this team.

  • Dev

    Use amnesty on James Posey
    Trade Price, Stephenson, Jones, 2nd to Utah for Paul Millsap (Utah needs a back-up PG, SG/SF depth, and young talent)
    Trade Rush and 1st to Hornets for Trevor Ariza (Hornets wanted Rush at the deadline, if they trade Chris Paul it is total rebuilding mode and Ariza is a good deal to get rid of)
    Sign Marcus Thornton (bench scoring)
    Sign Samuel Dalembert (back-up C) if he is ok with being a back up on an up and coming team.

  • K D B

    Thats the most smartest thing ive heard all day and
    i’m a professional nuclear scientist.