Portfolio Review: Believe it or not, the Indiana Pacers stand at somewhat of a crossroads. This is a young, up-and-coming team with an incredibly deep assortment of talent at more than reasonable contracts. But right now, unless Paul George takes an early Tracy McGrady-like leap in quality of play, this is a team with a very definite ceiling.
Larry Bird has done a tremendous job of not only putting together assets, but assets that mesh well together. Furthermore, with each player, there is depth to replace them. This leaves the entire roster flexible. This is a team that is already a third or fourth seed in the Eastern Conference, but will always remain behind Miami and Chicago. Right now it has the liquid assets, the cap space, and the potential to be more. But flexibility of this magnitude is a temporary luxury in the
NBA and what the Pacers can be will determined over the next few months.
Prime Assets: Cap space and solid, young talent at every position. Indiana is not exactly a prime free agent destination, but fortunately the Pacers have enough cap flexibility and depth to put together a Carmelo Anthony-like deal without gutting their team like the New York Knicks did. The Pacers can put together a solid package with any combination of their roster.
Worthless Stock: Many NBA general managers are past the stage of offering max contracts to the likes of Michael Redd or Kenyon Martin. The remaining few already have their salary caps tied up in the likes of Joe Johnson. Danny Granger is the quintessential non-franchise player paid like a franchise player. As such, he represents one of the few Pacers hard to move. Too talented to give up for scraps, too overpaid to appeal other teams.