Report: Pacers trade No. 32 pick to Heat; Miami selects KZ Okpala
Arguably the best trade of draft night got even better for the Indiana Pacers early in the second round.
After acquiring forward T.J. Warren and the No. 32 overall pick from the Phoenix Suns in exchange for cash shortly before the draft began, the Pacers flipped the early second-round choice they received from Phoenix into three future second-round picks from the Miami Heat, who drafted Stanford forward KZ Okpala at 32nd overall, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Indiana has traded No. 32 to Miami for three second-round picks, league source tells ESPN.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 21, 2019
Okpala was one of the most improved players in the country last season, culminating in the Stanford product being selected First Team All Pac-12. He averaged 16.1 points, 5.7 rebounds, and 2.0 assists per game while shooting 46.3 percent from the field and 36.8 percent from beyond the arc, all major improvements compared to a solid but unspectacular freshman season.
To no one’s surprise, KZ Okpala measured as one of the most impressive athletes in this class at the pre-draft combine in May. He came in at just over 6-foot-9 in shoes with a 7-foot-1 and 3/4 wingspan, weighing 210 pounds with body fat below five percent. Okpala leapt 37 inches in the vertical jump, too, a strong showing that overshadowed his merely average to above-marks in other athletic testing.
Indiana had already completed the most shocking trade of the night, taking Warren and the No. 32 pick into cap space without giving up anything of basketball value, before re-fortifying its stable of draft assets in the deal with Miami. Warren is on a reasonable contract signed just last summer, and quietly enjoyed an offensive evolution of sorts in 2018-19, averaging 18.0 points per game on the strength of 42.8 percent three-point shooting on high volume, a major departure for a player who wasn’t much of a long-range shooting threat over his first four seasons in the NBA.
For full 2019 NBA Draft results, click here.