The Indiana Pacers are set to miss the playoffs for the second consecutive season with their current 25-54 record, which has them in 13th place in the Eastern Conference. Thanks to their struggles, the Pacers began going into rebuild mode, making two major trades ahead of the 2022 NBA trade deadline.
Indiana first traded Caris LeVert to the Cleveland Cavaliers, and then the real blockbuster deal came when the franchise traded All-Star Domantas Sabonis to the Sacramento Kings in a trade that brought prized youngster Tyrese Haliburton to town. The Pacers also acquired Buddy Hield in that trade.
With Indiana looking at a new era under Rick Carlisle, this front office must look to make even more trades as part of a major overhaul. With that said, let’s take a look at two players the Pacers must trade in the 2022 NBA offseason.
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Pacers trades in 2022 NBA offseason
A veteran who could find himself on the move in the upcoming offseason is Malcolm Brogdon. The Virginia product has been with the Pacers since the 2019-20 season after a stint with the Milwaukee Bucks. He has also served as one of Indiana’s most consistent players in recent years … at least when he’s able to stay on the court.
In the 2021-22 season, Brogdon is averaging 19.1 points, 5.1 rebounds, and 5.9 assists in 36 games played. He might be done for the season given he hasn’t played in a few weeks. While Brogdon is a terrific player when healthy, the acquisition of Tyrese Haliburton could signal his end in Indy.
Additionally, Brogdon’s injury history isn’t helping his cause either. The guard has missed a good chunk of time in every season besides his rookie campaign with Milwaukee. The Pacers are more likely to turn their attention toward developing Haliburton and Chris Duarte, who are both expected to lead their backcourt moving forward.
Brogdon signed an extension with the club through 2024-25 right at the start of this season, which put a trade restriction on the guard that will lift soon once Indiana is finally done. Once that restriction is lifted, look for the Pacers to explore a trade.
Brogdon is a high-impact player with his two-way style of play when healthy. Moreover, he is just about to enter his prime at the age of 29, which means that there is still a lot of basketball ahead of him if he can avoid too many injuries. There is no doubt that many teams will be interested to go after his services if the Pacers choose to part ways with him in the offseason.
1. Myles Turner
Indiana has always been home to Myles Turner ever since he was drafted 11th overall back in 2015. He soon made a name for himself as one of the best defensive players in the NBA, but trade rumors have continued to follow him through recent years.
In fact, many expected the big man to be dealt at the trade deadline, but no deal ever came to fruition due to concerns about the soreness he was experiencing in his foot at that time. Domantas Sabonis was traded instead to finally break up that frontcourt pairing, and Turner has since been shut down for the season.
Turner is heading to the final year of his current contract next season, with a projected cap hit of $18 million. This means that Indiana must decide whether it will trade him or offer him a new deal in the near future in order to keep him around.
Make no mistake about it, Turner is still a talent who can serve as a valuable contributor to any team in the league. However, he hasn’t shown much improvement in recent seasons, especially on the offensive side. This season, he finished with averages of 12.9 points, 7.1 rebounds, and 2.8 blocks in 42 appearances. While he believes he deserves a larger offensive role, he has not really proved he deserves one.
The Pacers could still look to keep Turner around for the long haul now that Sabonis is gone, with the idea being that they can find a better fit as a frontcourt partner. However, given his situation, it would behoove Indiana to once again explore a trade of the center. There would be interest in his services, and the Pacers could add to their asset stockpile with another big trade.
This franchise badly needed to shake things up this season, and they got a head start on it. But there is more work to be done as part of this rebuilding process.