The Indiana Pacers were expected to compete for the services of either Victor Wembanyama or Scott Henderson as NBA pundits believed that the Pacers will eventually tank this season because of the current composition of their roster. That has since been debunked as Tyrese Haliburton has been the leader in catapulting Indiana to the middle of the playoff race in the Eastern Conference.

As the Pacers are seriously trending upward, there have been circulating rumors of Indiana bolstering their lineup to become more formidable against the East powerhouses. One name who would fit the holes of the Pacers is Atlanta Hawks forward John Collins. He will not clash with any of their core pieces, and he is in a similar timeline as guys like Haliburton, and Bennedict Mathurin.

John Collins for TJ McConnell, Chris Duarte, Jalen Smith

For the Pacers' side of things, it will take several assets for them to acquire John Collins because of his salary and the enormous value that Atlanta puts on their prized forward. Collins has been in the middle of trade talks for at least two seasons now, but the return package that the Hawks expect is enormous which is why teams may have been deciding to move away from negotiating on a deal involving John Collins.

Indiana must become more persistent because the fit of Collins with the guard depth of the Pacers will be remarkable for their future. Thus, they must offer a package centered around shooter Chris Duarte because the Hawks will want a shooter and floor spacer in exchange for one of their key guys. Duarte shocked many NBA fans when he exploded in his first game along with the first few months in the league, but his production has plummeted ever since.

In the rotation of the Pacers, Chris Duarte has not received a ton of minutes this year because of the ascension of their other wings like Mathurin and Aaron Nesmith. In his second season in the league, Duarte still holds a ton of trade value because of his upside and the premium coach's value on excellent perimeter shooting. 

Jalen Smith was a lottery pick by the Phoenix Suns, and he is in his third season in the NBA. Unfortunately, he has not lived up to expectations, and there are contests when coach Rick Carlisle benches him for the whole game. Smith does not fit well with Myles Turner or Isaiah Jackson on the floor, which is the primary reason for his ineffectiveness on both ends as well.

If John Collins heads to Indiana via trade, Jalen Smith will receive even fewer minutes because Collins will be the starting 4 of the Pacers. T.J. McConnell or Daniel Theis could be the final salary filler for the trade to push through as these two individuals are unlikely to become part of the future of the Pacers. Furthermore, the draft picks may not be necessary anymore, but the Pacers do have a lot at their disposal if they decide to include any.

For Collins, his point production will increase because he will have one of the best passers in Tyrese Haliburton as the floor general of the squad. He will not have two ball-dominant guards like how he is experiencing now in Atlanta with both Trae Young and Dejounte Murray. Even on the defensive end of the floor, Collins will thrive alongside Myles Turner because he will not be pressured to become a rim protector for the Pacers.