1. Pacers make a splash for Herb Jones
The Action Network’s Matt Moore reported the Pelicans could trade Jones. He just signed a four-year $53.8 million extension, but the franchise has never paid the luxury tax. They have $150.1 million committed in salaries for next season, and starting center Jonas Valanciunas is a free agent. Trey Murphy’s extension will kick in the following year, and their roster will be expensive.
Jones is an elite defender and shooting 37.8 percent from 3-point range this season. The 25-year-old is a starter and playing a crucial role for New Orleans. They need shooting and did draft Hield sixth overall in 2016. This trade sees the Pacers make a massive splash and land Jones.
Pacers get: Herb Jones, Larry Nance Jr.
This dumps over $20 million from the Pelicans payroll next season and gives them a young big man to develop. Isaiah Jackson has produced strong per-minute numbers and could blossom in a larger role. New Orleans also picks up four draft picks, including an unprotected 2029 1st rounder.
The Pacers get the lockdown defender they have been searching for and could become true title contenders. Herb Jones and Pascal Siakam can wreak havoc on the wings as Myles Turner protects the rim. Fans know Tyrese Haliburton will have the offense rolling, and Indiana will finally be able to get enough stops.
Will the Indiana Pacers make another splash before the Feb. 8 trade deadline? Expect them to be active and aggressive in searching for the right move, and stay tuned to see how all shakes out.