Ranking Indiana Pacers’ top 12 trade assets heading into the offseason

Tyrese Haliburton, Indiana Pacers (Photo by Julio Aguilar/2023 Julio Aguilar)
Tyrese Haliburton, Indiana Pacers (Photo by Julio Aguilar/2023 Julio Aguilar) /
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Indiana Pacers
Jalen Smith (Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images) /

9. Jalen Smith

For a while, it seemed as though the Indiana Pacers were going to move forward with Jalen Smith as the team’s full-time center. However, that all changed when the team elected to sign Myles Turner to a contract extension. Now, Smith is one of the better backup centers in the league. But the intrigue surrounding him is that he has the potential to be so much more.

And Smith showed that in 22 games he played with the Pacers last season, averaging 13 points and eight rebounds on 53 percent shooting from the field and 37 percent shooting from 3-point range. He didn’t exactly match those numbers, likely due to a diminished role this season compared to last year. Still, Smith averaged nine points and six rebounds on 48 percent shooting from the field in this third season in the league.

Smith carries immediate value on the trade market as a backup center with the potential to grow into a starting stretch-big down the road in his career. The question is, will that be with the Pacers or another team?

If the Pacers wanted, they could shop him this offseason after the re-signing of Turner. And considering he’s essentially an expiring contract (with a player option for the 2024-25 season), he could be a sought-after player this offseason.