The Pacers had an option to offer Evan Turner some $8.7 million in order to retain his status as a restricted free agent. Such a move would all but assure they kept Turner, who they received midway through last season in a trade for Danny Granger, for another season.
Obviously, the Pacers did no such thing, according to Jeff Zillgitt of USA Today.
Thus, Turner is now officially an unrestricted free agent, which means he is free to negotiate with any team — including Indiana — and sign the best deal he is offered.
While Turner could still theoretically return to the Pacers, I doubt it would happen, even if the team is unable to re-sign Lance Stephenson.
Turner couldn´t even crack the rotation as the Pacers lost to the Heat in the Eastern Conference Finals, losing his spot to Rasual Butler. Overall, in 149 playoff minutes, Turner posted a PER of 9.8. (The average player is 15.0.)
What about the other player the Pacers acquired in the Granger trade: Lavoy Allen?
The Pacers had the same option to make a qualifying offer to Allen, though the figure was lower (around $3.8 million).
I haven´t seen anything official, but it is a near certainty that the Pacers declined making Allen such a large offer as well. (Update: Bird indeed did not make an offer, per Candace Buckner.) They need all the space under the luxury tax they can manage to make a run a re-signing Stephenson.
Still, the Pacers do want to retain Allen, who is playing in Indiana´s free agent camp this week and will likely be on the team´s summer league squad starting on Saturday in Orlando.
Bird will probably wait until the bigger fish are fried (Lance) before doing anything with Allen, but the fact that he is practicing in Indiana today means that we are likely to see him get a deal to return before the summer is over.
Update: As Tim Donahue notes, while the Pacers did not make a qualifying offer to Turner, they do retain his Bird rights (unless/until they renounce those rights).
What this means for practical matters is that the team can go over the salary cap to re-sign him and retain their mid level exception to use on another player or players (like, say, C.J. Miles).
As poorly as Turner has played, Bird has publicly reaffirmed his belief in him, so it is not crazy to think that such a sceanrio could play out if Indiana is unable to retain Lance Stephenson.