3. No secondary playmaker
While he makes his highest impact there, Walker's potential contributions do not stop at the defensive end, as he could function beautifully as a secondary playmaker for Indiana.
Going into the draft, one of the most appealing things about Walker, apart from his defense, was his playmaking, which showed in Summer League. Despite a short sample size, Walker showed some very impressive flashes when given the opportunity to facilitate the offense, being a fantastic ball handler for his position, and, despite averaging under two assists per game at Houston, threw some brilliant passes that are very hard to come by for players his size.
Despite the Houston offense being mainly run by Marcus Sasser and Jamal Shead, leaving Walker to stand in the corner every so often, he still showed plenty of flashes of playmaking brilliance at his size, akin to Draymond Green when he came into the league.
Indeed, this potential was on full display during Summer League, as Walker wowed Pacers fans with his slick passes, adept playmaking, and court vision for a power forward, throwing some fantastic dimes and showcasing amazing craftiness for a player of his physicality level.
However, the question with Walker is not about his abilities but about the potential opportunities he gets. Provided he gets some playing time soon, Indiana will want to keep Walker involved in the offense at all times and not relegate him to standing around as he did at times in Houston.
Luckily for Walker, the Pacers seem to be in need of a secondary playmaker. While Tyrese Haliburton is arguably the best playmaker in basketball this season, Indiana has routinely looked lost without him on the floor, and with the addition of a freight train adept at handling the ball and calling the shots on offense like Walker, there could be much more opportunities for the Pacers offense to thrive without Haliburton.
With the 2023 G League Winter Showcase concluding recently, as well as the start of trade season, we may not have to wait much longer to see extended Jarace Walker minutes. Provided Indiana makes a move at or before the deadline, we could see the youngster get meaningful minutes very soon, provided he dodges trade talks of his own, which have been circulating recently.
Jarace Walker is a fantastic young player with a lot of upside, who, despite getting limited opportunities in meaningful NBA games, has always shown some promise when called upon. While he may not single-handedly fix all of Indiana's issues right out the gates, he certainly wouldn't hurt them.