The Pacers fell out of sole possession of first place in the Central Division tonight following their loss to the Celtics and the Bulls' win over the Heat. We rounded up the latest out of Chicago earlier this evening, and now we'll do so with the other team atop the Central, courtesy Mike Wells of the Indianapolis Star.
- Sam Young suffered a sprained ankle in practice yesterday that could cost him his job. The 6'6" swingman's minimum-salary contract is guaranteed for $25K, and it will become fully guaranteed if he doesn't clear waivers before Thursday. As Wells notes, the Pacers would have to waive him by Monday to avoid the full season tab, and they'll consider doing just that over the weekend when they receive further information on Young's injury. The prognosis at this point has Young missing two weeks.
- Courtney Lee, who signed a four-year, $21.35MM deal with the Celtics last summer, gave thought to signing with the Pacers instead, since he's an Indianapolis native and friends with George Hill. When the Pacers signed D.J. Augustin and Gerald Green, though, Lee knew it probably squeezed him out, and as Wells writes, Indiana was turned off by his agent's asking price. "It just didn't pan out right," the shooting guard said. "I was kind of laid-back with that situation. I wasn't really too much into it. I was trying to relax and take my mind off free agency as much as possible and have my agent handle things."
- Orlando Johnson, recalled today from the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, was supposed to have a longer stint in the D-League, but Young's injury forced the team to bring him back early to provide depth for the big club.