Pacers Offseason a Clear Sign of Where the Pacers are Heading
In my last article looking at the Pacers NBA Draft. Chris Duarte was on my radar but further down the draft board. It ended up a lot of teams were looking at him, and the Pacers selected him with the 13th pick in the NBA Draft. Duarte has the chance to be a 3 and D guy, but he believes he can also create shots at the NBA level. He was 1st team All-PAC 12 and 1st team All-Defense in the Pac 12.
The Pacers were not done yet, as they made a deal with the Brooklyn Nets. Three 2nd round picks and the Pacers secured the 31st pick in the draft. Again the Pacers were not done as they moved up to the 22nd pick in a deal that sent the #31 pick and Aaron Holiday to the Washington Wizards. Pacers would use the 22nd pick to get Isaiah Jackson out of the University of Kentucky. Jackson’s numbers do not jump off the page. 8.4 PPG, but the highlighted numbers would be 6.6 Rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game. He made the SEC All-Freshman Team and also SEC All-Defense.
Pacers Offseason Defensive Moves Continue into Free Agency
T.J. McConnell coming off a season where he led the league in steals and assists for a bench player, was rewarded in being re-signed to a 4 year $35.2 million deal. The Pacers also brought in Torrey Craig on a 2 year $10 million deal. Barring a trade the Pacers lineup is full for the upcoming season.
4 Moves All Defensive Identity
All 4 of these moves by the Pacers show a willingness to be a defensive team for the upcoming season. Coach Rick Carlisle‘s offense in Dallas analytically was one of the best of all time and hopefully can create more opportunities for the Pacers offense, but not completely neglect the defense, when Myles Turner is not on the floor. 2 draft picks and 2 players all known for being willing defenders will help correct that for the 2021-22 season.
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