Talks Between Stephenson, Pacers Hit Snag

July 4 2014 at 12:55pm CDT By Chuck Myron

FRIDAY, 12:55pm: Stephenson’s representatives spoke with the Pacers earlier today, but they’re not any closer to a deal, according to Broussard (Twitter link).

WEDNESDAY, 7:35am: The Pacers and Lance Stephenson have reached an impasse in negotiations, with the shooting guard unwilling to accept Indiana’s offer of five years and $44MM, tweets Chris Broussard of ESPN.com. The Alberto Ebanks client will move on to discussions with other teams, and the Bulls, Lakers and Hornets have interest, Broussard adds.

Indiana rolled out the red carpet for Stephenson in the hours immediately after free agency began, reportedly producing a movie in his honor as the team sought to win him over. President of basketball operations Larry Bird has spoken on multiple occasions of his affection for the tempermental 23-year-old, in spite of some apparent misgivings from others in the organization. Bird nonetheless prefaced his remarks a month ago by saying the team had a price ceiling┬áthat it wouldn’t exceed to re-sign him.

At least one NBA GM believes Stephenson would be worth $10-12MM on talent alone, but his on-court antics and alleged selfish behavior knocked his value down to $8-10MM in the GM’s eyes, as Michael Scotto of SheridanHoops reported last month. Another GM pegged him all the way down in the $4-6MM range annually, so it seems like the average annual value of $8.8MM that the Pacers apparently have on the table wouldn’t be much of a sacrifice.

Still, players of Stephenson’s talent rarely hit unrestricted free agency at such a young age, so perhaps he can find a team willing to pay more. A report linked the Lakers, Bulls and then-Bobcats to Stephenson as far back as early February, so it seems those clubs weren’t turned off by Indiana’s second-half swoon.

7 thoughts on “Talks Between Stephenson, Pacers Hit Snag

  1. I think Stephenson + Mirotic instead of Carmelo would be an excellent back up plan for the Bulls. Under Noah and Thibodeau’s wing, I think Lance would behave for the most part.

    1. You really have no idea how he is. As a Pacers fan, he is really entertaining as long as he backs it up in his game. He does have maturity issues, but he can once again be quite entertaining just as long as his game is great. I for one want him back in a Pacers uniform, but it does make things interesting in whom the Pacers may pursue if he does infact leave.

  2. I bet the GM who suggested Stephenson being in the $4-6M range got quite a kick out of the Jodie Meeks deal.

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