The Indiana Pacers have put themselves in a position to win now, but at the same time, they have enough young pieces on the roster to plan for the future rather than push in all their chips right away.
Leading the charge is Tyrese Haliburton, who has quickly emerged as one of the best point guards in the NBA. He made his first All-Star game last year, and this season, he could be on track to make an All-NBA Team.
However, for all of the Pacers’ success this season, they’ve struggled mightily on the defensive end of the floor, leaving plenty of room for improvement throughout the year.
And while they could be active at the trade deadline, another team could be targeting the same player that Indiana has had their eye on for a long, long time.
According to Shams Charania of The Athletic, the Sacramento Kings, Haliburton's former team, are expected to show an interest in a potential OG Anunoby trade with the Sacramento Kings.
Indiana’s interest in Anunoby dates back to the 2023 NBA Draft when they were reportedly intrigued by the idea of trading the eighth overall pick, which eventually turned into Jarace Walker.
Anunoby is fresh off an All-Defensive Second Team season last year and has been just as effective this season. Adding him to the Pacers’ lineup would not only heighten their ceiling, but it would also drastically improve their play on the defensive end.
However, Sacramento’s interest could make it much harder for the Pacers to land Anunoby. Plenty of teams will put in an offer for Anunoby, should he be made available by the Toronto Raptors, but the Kings could make a very juicy offer.
Should they go all-in for Anunoby, an offer of Davion Mitchell, Colby Jones, matching salary, and picks might be good enough to beat what the Pacers are willing to throw onto the table.
This is especially true considering Sacramento’s window for winning is much shorter than Indiana’s, so they could be willing to offer more young pieces than the Pacers are.
Anunoby would be the perfect trade target for the Pacers, but a lot of teams, including the Kings, could stand in their way of landing the Raptors forward.
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