Ladies and gentlemen, the Indiana Pacers have finally done it. After weeks of speculation and concern over the possibility of losing Bennedict Mathurin or Jarace Walker, the Pacers have officially traded for (now former) Toronto Raptors All-Star Pascal Siakam.
And the best part? They traded for Siakam without giving up any core pieces. As reported by Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the final trade package sent to Toronto consisted of Bruce Brown, Jordan Nwora, two 2024 first-round picks (one of which is the Pacers'), and Indiana's own 2026 first-round pick.
Unsurprisingly, this move sent shockwaves through the league, especially with Pacers and Raptors fans, as most were expecting Indiana to give up at least one piece of their young core to attain Siaikam, who, despite being on an expiring contract, is still valued as a game-changer for a team and was All-NBA two years ago and an All-Star the previous season.
However, as negotiations continued and Toronto and Indiana inched closer to a deal, it became clear that Mathurin and Walker were off-limits in the eyes of the Pacers, and a trade would be built around draft picks.
This report sparked doubt amongst fans who hypothesized that Toronto allowed the trade reports to leak in hopes that another team would offer a better deal. Unfortunately for the Raptors, that deal never arrived, and at roughly 2:00 p.m. Eastern Time, the deal was finalized for Pascal Siakam to be an Indiana Pacer.
Prior to the trade, and even more so after it, the main concern, and perhaps the only one among Pacers fans, has been Siakam's looming expiring contract. The fear is that Siakam may bolt off to another team in free agency the first chance he gets and leave Indiana with nothing.
This was precisely why fans were hesitant to include Walker or Mathurin in the deal and why final negotiations did not include either of the two youngsters or even Andrew Nembhard, who Raptors fans were hoping to get as some consolation prize.
However, even with the trade being finalized, even with Siakam on his way to Indiana for practically pennies on the dollar, and even with Jarace, Mathurin, and Nembhard staying in Indiana, some Pacers fans still have their doubts about the trade. Here are three reasons why the Indiana Pacers trade for Pascal Siakam was an absolute win.