3. Jrue Holiday – took Tyler Hansbrough
In 2009 there were multiple players that topped the NBA draft prospect list, most notably was Blake Griffin out of Oklahoma. Other players like Stephen Curry and James Harden had looked excellent in college and were grading out to be decent pro prospects.
A player in North Carolina had won National Player of the Year, but wasn’t seen by many to be a great NBA prospect. However, that didn’t stop the Pacers from jumping on the chance. They went ahead and drafted Tyler Hansbrough out of the University of North Carolina with the 13th pick in the draft.
Tyler or “Psycho T”, played for four seasons in Indiana but was never really more than a glorified role player in his time with the Pacers. He eventually went on to play for Toronto and Charlotte before being out of the league within eight years.
So who did they pass on to get Hansbrough?
That would be Jrue Holiday out of UCLA. Jrue was taken with the 17th overall pick in the draft by the 76ers and has sense had productive careers in Philly, New Orleans, and now Milwaukee where he became an NBA champion.
Years later the Pacers would have the other two Holiday brothers, but unfortunately they missed their chance to get the most talented of the three.