Indiana Pacers: 30 greatest players in franchise history

(Photo by Andy Hayt/NBAE via Getty Images)
(Photo by Andy Hayt/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Indiana Pacers
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16. Victor Oladipo

Some might say that since Kehinde Babatunde Victor Oladipo has only played one and a half seasons with the Indiana Pacers, he shouldn’t slot as high as No. 16 on this list.

Point taken. But sheesh, what a fun one and a half seasons it’s been.

You know the story by now. Oladipo came to town alongside Domantas Sabonis in the blockbuster trade that sent Paul George to the Oklahoma City Thunder.

At the time, pretty much everyone in the United States considered this to be an incredibly lopsided trade in OKC’s favor. Sabonis was an extremely raw prospect coming off a less-than-stellar rookie campaign, and Oladipo seemed like a possibly overpaid volume scorer destined to bounce around the league.

Thankfully, Victor proved everyone wrong. Not long into his 2017-2018 season, the league was placed on notice. This was a completely renewed and restored Victor Oladipo.

He could pull up from anywhere and hit a dagger jumper to win a game. He could get to the rim with explosiveness and control we had never seen from him before. He could lock down almost anyone on defense and led the NBA in steals. He pushed LeBron James and the Cavs to the brink of elimination in the playoffs, something no other Eastern Conference team even came close to doing that season (that darn missed goaltending call).

All of this led to his first All-Star selection, a Most Improved Player award, an All-Defensive team appearance, and a spot on 3rd Team All-NBA alongside Stephen Curry. And although his second season in Indiana was disappointingly cut short due to injury, he still did enough to earn his second All-Star nod regardless.

For completely reinventing himself into a star, for always leaving it all out on the court, for inspiring hope in a fanbase reeling from rejection, and for his unanimously agreed upon best singing voice in the NBA, Victor Oladipo is already approaching a Top 10 spot in the all-time Pacers greats list. He’ll get there, health permitting.