Pacers Season Review: Life with and without Victor Oladipo

Indiana Pacers (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)
Indiana Pacers (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images) /
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Victor Oladipo of the Indiana Pacers
INDIANAPOLIS, IN – JANUARY 19: Victor Oladipo #4 of the Indiana Pacers stretches before the game against the Dallas Mavericks on January 19, 2019 at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images) /

The Face of the Franchise

Victor Oladipo will be in the Pacers plans for the foreseeable future. His current cap hit is only $21 million, which is a steal for a play of his caliber. Barring a shocking move, Victor Oladipo will be back in 2019. But just what should we expect from Vic?

Since the injury, Oladipo has been updating his progress in rehab. We do not know exactly when he will be cleared to return, whether that be at the beginning of next season or sometime during the regular season. Still, I am optimistic about his return to a high level of play.

More from 8 Points, 9 Seconds

A leg injury can be a blessing in disguise in terms of shooting the ball. Victor cannot explode and work on his burst much during the rehab process, so he is shooting from a stationary position. That alone will allow him to regain his shot.

The same sort of situation occurred when Paul George suffered a leg injury back in 2014. While he was already a star in the making, he still found ways to improve his jump shot. George was one of the best spot-up shooters in the NBA this season. Hopefully the same can be true for Oladipo. And sorry, I know Pacers fans hate to compare the two.

I do think there will be limits to Victor’s game at first. He relies on explosion and pull-up jump shots, but the quad is crucial for that element. I see him playing a bit more off-ball and as a spot-up shooter next season until he regains his complete athleticism.

This is not to say that I think Vic will be rushed back before he’s ready, but rather the mental aspect of recovering from an injury. He might be medically cleared, but still cautious. The mental hurdle of getting over an injury is just as important as the physical component.

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Regardless, Vic will be an important player for the Indiana Pacers again in 2019-20. He is the leader on and off the court, and his absence made that perfectly clear. His rehab seems to be going well, and there is optimism he will return to his old self.