Jeff Teague is eligible for a contract extension, and the Pacers hope he can become the team’s long-term answer at point guard, but they may not be able to extend him before he reaches free agency next July. As Steve Kyler of Basketball Insiders details, Indiana currently has just over $6MM in cap room, and likely wants to retain that space for a possible new deal for Paul George, who becomes extension-eligible later this month. To entice either player to ink a new deal sooner rather than later, the Pacers will almost certainly need to provide a raise in addition to an extension, and George figures to be a priority over Teague.
That doesn’t mean that a new, in-season deal for Teague is out of the question. However, unless George decides not to sign an extension this year, a trade would likely be necessary to clear the cap room necessary for a Teague extension. And as Kyler writes, the Pacers don’t seem overly concerned about making a deal at the moment.
Here’s more from Kyler on a few players entering potential contract years:
- According to Kyler, the Pelicans are seeking backcourt depth, having eyed Ty Lawson and Lance Stephenson recently, and the backcourt may not just be a short-term concern. With Jrue Holiday and Tyreke Evans entering contract years, it seems unlikely that they’ll both still be on New Orleans’ roster a year from now, particularly since both players have had health issues.
- Rudy Gay‘s 2017/18 player option has been a complication in trade talks, since some potential suitors don’t want to take on that option, and others would want assurances he’ll opt in, per Kyler. Still, the Kings appear ready to move on, with Kyler suggesting it’s probably “a matter of when rather than if” Gay gets traded.
- Source close to the Hawks tell Kyler that the relationship between Paul Millsap and the team is “actually pretty good,” despite the fact that Atlanta seriously explored trading him this offseason. The two sides have had talks about Millsap’s role and his future with the franchise, but Kyler wonders if the Hawks would become more inclined to trade him if they play poorly in the first half. After losing Al Horford this summer, Atlanta may want to avoid repeating that situation in 2017.
- Kyler also has notes on Zach Randolph and Greg Monroe, so be sure to check out his column for the full details.