Pacers Rumors

Trade Rumors: Bulls, Collins, Gobert, Lakers, Hield, More

The Bulls are among the teams that have shown interest in Hawks big man John Collins, sources tell Matt Moore of Action Network. Moore also confirms that Boston and Sacramento are two of the other clubs that have registered some level of interest in Collins, as Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report said earlier today.

Chicago has been linked to a handful of frontcourt players so far this offseason, most notably Rudy Gobert. Moore writes that the Bulls remain in the mix for Gobert, but cautions that the Jazz‘s asking price will be “steep” and says any trade discussions involving the three-time Defensive Player of the Year could drag out, given Danny Ainge‘s reputation as a tough negotiator.

According to Moore, if Gobert is traded, the Bulls are probably the most likely landing spot, with the Timberwolves looming as a dark horse, but there’s no guarantee a deal will be made.

Here are a few more trade notes and rumors from Moore:

  • Moore reports that the Lakers have “circled back” to Pacers sharpshooter Buddy Hield after not trading for him a year ago. The Lakers have a clearer path to making an offer for Hield that doesn’t include Russell Westbrook‘s unwanted contract this summer than they did at the trade deadline, given that his salary declines from $23MM in 2021/22 to $21.2MM in ’22/23.
  • The Sixers are probably unlikely to find a taker for Tobias Harris, given the size of his contract, but Moore suggests the Kings are one team to watch on that front.
  • The Cavaliers aren’t looking to trade former lottery pick Isaac Okoro after drafting Ochai Agbaji, says Moore.
  • Moore suggests that the Raptors‘ asking price for OG Anunoby when the Trail Blazers pursued him around the time of the draft was believed to be the No. 7 pick, Josh Hart or Nassir Little, and a future first-round pick. Now that the draft has passed, Moore is skeptical that Anunoby will be on the move this summer.

Pacers Exercise Oshae Brissett’s 2022/23 Team Option

12:11pm: The Pacers have officially exercised Brissett’s option, tweets Keith Smith of Spotrac.

10:11am: The Pacers are picking up their team option on forward Oshae Brissett for 2022/23, reports James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star (Twitter link). Brissett’s $1,846,738 salary for next season will remain non-guaranteed after the option is exercised, but it’s a safe bet he won’t be waived.

Brissett, who turned 24 this month, has been a regular part of Indiana’s rotation over the last season-and-a-half, averaging 9.6 PPG and 5.4 RPG with a .368 3PT% in 88 games (23.7 MPG).

Given how modest his option salary is, there was never doubt that the Pacers would retain Brissett, but there was some question about whether or not they’d pick up his option.

Turning down the option would have made the former Syracuse standout a restricted free agent this offseason, whereas exercising it will put him on track for unrestricted free agency next year.

The Pacers have apparently decided to keep Brissett on a low cap number for one more year and will take their chances with locking him up beyond 2022/23, knowing that they won’t have the right of first refusal on any offer he signs as a free agent next summer.

We’re tracking all of the ’22/23 team option decisions right here.

Eastern Free Agent Rumors: Sexton, Bagley, Claxton, Hartenstein, Bridges

The Cavaliers are trying to re-sign Collin Sexton, but their first offer was short of what he’s hoping for, according to Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report.

The free agent guard wants a new deal that averages about $20MM per year, sources tell Fischer, but Cleveland’s early offer in extension talks was below that number. Fischer says it was similar to Jordan Clarkson‘s “three-year, $51MM” deal, but Clarkson’s contract is actually worth $52MM over four years, so it’s unclear which of those figures was closer to Cleveland’s initial offer.

Sexton missed most of last season with a torn meniscus in his left knee. He was recently cleared for full basketball activities and should be ready for training camp.

There’s more on Eastern Conference free agents, all from Fischer:

  • Marvin Bagley III, who was acquired at the trade deadline, is expected to re-sign with the Pistons for more than $10MM per year. Fischer compares the expected deal to what the Hornets gave Kelly Oubre, which was two seasons at $24.6MM with a partial guarantee on the second year.
  • Fischer confirms a report that Nic Claxton will likely remain with the Nets, probably for an amount in the neighborhood of the full MLE.
  • The Bulls and Magic could be among the suitors for center Isaiah Hartenstein now that the Clippers are expected to give their full taxpayer MLE to John Wall. Chicago has been linked to several centers, but Fischer hears that the team would prefer not to use its entire non-taxpayer MLE of $10.1MM, so Hartenstein may be a lower-cost option. Rumors have emerged that Orlando may have interest in Hartenstein, but Fischer adds that he could also decide to remain in L.A. on a cheaper deal and hope to cash in later.
  • The Pacers are considering an offer for Hornets forward Miles Bridges, but Fischer says it’s not clear if Indiana is ready to hand out such a large contract. Fischer adds that the Grizzlies have been considered a “sleeper candidate” due to the presence of Jaren Jackson Jr., his former college teammate, but sources tell Fischer that Memphis isn’t expected to pursue Bridges.

Celtics Interested In Danilo Gallinari, T.J. Warren

The Celtics are targeting “high-scoring, small-ball forwards” with their mid-level exception, writes Jake Fischer of Bleacher Report. Fischer mentions the Hawks‘ Danilo Gallinari and the PacersT.J. Warren as possibilities, but adds that others are also under consideration.

Boston can only offer the taxpayer mid-level exception (projected to be worth about $6.4MM) unless it unloads some salary.

Gallinari, who is also rumored to be part of trade talks with the Spurs, could wind up on the free agent market because his contract currently only carries a $5MM guarantee for next season. The 33-year-old averaged 11.7 points and 4.7 rebounds for Atlanta this season while shooting 38.1% from three-point range, but seems unlikely to be retained at his full $21.5MM salary, whether or not he’s traded.

The Heat may also consider Gallinari if they can’t re-sign P.J. Tucker, Fischer says.

Warren has only played four combined games over the past two seasons, but he was a dangerous scorer before being injured and was one of the stars of the Orlando bubble. Warren, 28, is averaging 15.5 points and 4.1 rebounds for his career, including a career-best 19.8 PPG during the 2019/20 season.

Central Notes: Pacers Rookies, Stephenson, Cavs’ Targets, Sexton, Garland

The Pacers wound up with three players in the draft — lottery pick Bennedict Mathurin and second-rounders Andrew Nembhard and Kendall Brown. Team president Kevin Pritchard has high hopes for the trio, Bob Kravitz of The Athletic writes.

“One of the things I’m absolutely convinced of, these three young men will be a part of this organization for a long time,” Pritchard said. “We wanted to get more athletic, more dynamic and bring some intelligence. All three demonstrated that athleticism and drive to win. The one common denominator is, they all love to play.”

We have more from the Central Division:

Pacers’ GM: Team “Not Actively Shopping” Myles Turner

Appearing on the Kevin & Query show on 107.5 The Fan in Indianapolis on Tuesday (YouTube link), Pacers general manager Chad Buchanan discussed a pair of veteran Indiana players who have been at the center of trade rumors this offseason: Myles Turner and Malcolm Brogdon.

Asked directly whether the Pacers are “actively shopping” Turner, Buchanan denied that the veteran center is on the trade block.

“We are not actively shopping Myles Turner,” Buchanan said. “At this point in our offseason process, we are listening to other teams that contact us, but we are in no hurry to massively alter this roster. We’re trying to do things in an order that allows us to give us a chance to be better down the road. Teams talk with each other this time of year and there’s conversations that are had, but we’re more of a listening type of organization than we are trying to make drastic changes. I think that’s where you make mistakes.”

Buchanan added that he believes Turner is in position to have a “tremendous season” now that the logjam at center involving Domantas Sabonis has been cleared, and suggested the Pacers are open to the idea of discussing a new contract with Turner, who is extension-eligible.

“Him and Domas playing together was good at times, it was challenging at times for both players. Now that we’ve cleared that up, he’s got a runway here to be our starting center,” Buchanan said. “He’s playing with probably the best pass-first point guard he’s played with in a long time in Tyrese (Haliburton) and he’s got a coach who believes in him. It’s a great opportunity for him to have a big year. We’d love to see him with us long-term. Whether that plays out or not, that’s kind of in his hands a little bit as well.

“… He’s a big part of this organization, who we are and what we stand for. … We could not be happier with what Myles has done for this organization over the last seven years and hopefully this continues for a long time to come.”

While Buchanan’s comments suggest the Pacers aren’t going out of their way to pursue trades involving Turner, he was far less equivocal when asked directly if the team is shopping Brogdon. Buchanan referred to the guard as a “tremendous player,” but hinted that Indiana is keeping its options open.

“When you’ve won 25 games, we have to look at everything we can to help set us up to be better in the long run. There’s opportunities out there that if they present themselves, we have to consider,” the Pacers’ GM said. “I think at the core, Malcolm is a great player. We signed him because he was a great player and he’s done a lot of really good things for us. We’re going to always be opportunistic if the opportunity presents itself moving forward, but at the end of the day, we like him on this team. I think he does some things that really complement the guys that we have, can help some of the young players on our team. We’ll see where it goes between now and the start of the season.”

Brogdon has been linked most frequently this offseason to the Knicks and Wizards. New York appears to be zeroing in on free agent guard Jalen Brunson, while Washington remains in the market for veteran help at the point.

Stein’s Latest: Looney, Simons, Nurkic, Clippers, Wall, More

Teams interested in pursuing center Kevon Looney this offseason are increasingly pessimistic that they’ll be able to lure him away from the Warriors, league sources tell Marc Stein (Substack link). According to Stein, there’s an expectation that Looney will likely re-sign with Golden State on a multiyear deal when he becomes a free agent this week.

Stein writes that there has been similar pessimism from the teams with interest in making a run at Trail Blazers guard Anfernee Simons or center Jusuf Nurkic. Simons is a restricted free agent while Nurkic is unrestricted, but the belief among rival teams is that both players will remain in Portland, per Stein.

Here are a few more updates from the veteran NBA reporter:

  • Stein says league sources reiterated to him on Monday that the Clippers will be making a “strong pitch” to John Wall if the veteran point guard reaches a buyout agreement with Houston. There’s a sense that the presence of head coach Tyronn Lue will help increase L.A.’s chances of landing Wall, Stein adds.
  • While they stayed put on draft night, Hawks big man John Collins and Pacers guard Malcolm Brogdon remain highly likely to be traded this offseason, sources tell Stein.
  • Following a strong year overseas with AS Monaco, big man Donta Hall is receiving interest from NBA teams, according to Stein. Hall, a former Alabama standout, appeared in a total of 22 games for Detroit, Brooklyn, and Orlando in 2020 and 2021.

Free Agent Rumors: Brunson, Tucker, LaVine, Sexton, Campazzo

Marc Stein isn’t certain whether the Mavericks or the Knicks will end up signing Jalen Brunson this offseason, but he hints in his latest Substack article that it would be a surprise if the point guard ends up anywhere else.

After being identified earlier this year as possible suitors for Brunson, the Pistons and Pacers are no longer being mentioned as potential destinations, Stein writes. Both teams used lottery picks to draft guards last Thursday, with Detroit selecting Jaden Ivey and Indiana nabbing Bennedict Mathurin.

Elsewhere on the free agency front, Stein provides an update on P.J. Tucker after reporting last week that the Sixers are considered the biggest threat to sign the forward away from the Heat. According to Stein, numerous rival teams are saying “with even more conviction now than they did last week” that they believe Tucker will end up in Philadelphia on a three-year, $30MM deal.

After adding De’Anthony Melton, the Sixers project to be a taxpayer and would likely have to shed a little salary in order to give Tucker $30MM over three years. Using the full mid-level exception or acquiring him via sign-and-trade are the only ways Philadelphia could realistically offer a $10MM annual salary — either approach would hard-cap team salary at the tax apron.

Here are more free agency rumors from across the NBA:

  • K.C. Johnson of NBC Sports Chicago writes that all signs still point toward the Bulls being prepared to offer Zach LaVine a five-year, maximum-salary contract when free agency opens this week, with LaVine likely to accept.
  • The Wizards have some interest in Collin Sexton but are probably in the market for a more traditional point guard in free agency, Chris Fedor of reports in a subscriber-exclusive story. Fedor believes the Cavaliers remain in the driver’s seat to re-sign Sexton, especially given that some of his potential suitors – including Detroit – drafted guards last Thursday.
  • After indicating an openness to returning overseas, Nuggets free agent guard Facundo Campazzo clarified that his goal is to remain in the NBA. He tweeted out a statement in Spanish that translates to English as follows: My priority one, two, and three is to continue in the NBA. For now, I don’t have in mind to return to Europe. It is obvious that at some point it will happen, but not now. I have it very clear: I want to try again, in whatever franchise it is, but to try again.
  • In an Insider-only story for, Bobby Marks takes an in-depth look at which teams project to have cap room, which will be taxpayers, and which fall somewhere in between.

Pacers Notes: Nembhard, Mathurin, Summer League, Trades

The Pacers selected Andrew Nembhard with the No. 31 pick in Thursday’s draft, adding to a young core that also includes Tyrese Haliburton, No. 6 pick Bennedict Mathurin and others. As Gabby Hajduk of the Indianapolis Star explores, Nembhard is older than most draft picks at 22, so he’s expected to bring intelligence and maturity to the club.

“The word that stands out for me is feel,” head coach Rick Carlisle said. “(Nembhard) has just got an amazing feel for the game. I love point guards. I’ve had the real privilege of working with some great, great point guards.

“I mean, Jason Kidd, we won a championship with Jason Kidd, we had J.J. Barea on that team. Jason Terry was a point guard that converted to a scoring guard. I see some of all those qualities in Andrew. Love his size, love playmakers that can control the game, not only with their skill but with their mind.”

Nembhard receiving strong praise from his new championship coach is justified. He averaged 11.8 points, 5.8 assists and 1.6 steals per game last season, shooting an efficient 45% from the field and 38% from behind the arc.

There’s more out of Indiana tonight:

  • As the Pacers continues to push toward a full rebuild, Mathurin should be viewed as a quality piece to the puzzle, Evan Sidery of opines. Mathurin, 20, is a 6’7″ guard who held per-game averages of 17.7 points and 5.6 rebounds at Arizona last season. His confidence certainly isn’t lacking, as apparent by his recent comments regarding Lakers superstar LeBron James (hat tip to Yahoo Sports). “A lot of people say he’s great,” Mathurin said of James. “I want to see how great he is. I don’t think anybody is better than me. He’s going to have to show me he’s better than me.”
  • Scott Agness of Fieldhouse Files examines the team’s summer league roster, which still isn’t fully completed. In addition to Mathurin and Nembhard, the Pacers are expected to have Chris Duarte, Terry Taylor and others when the team plays in Las Vegas next month.
  • While Mathurin may be a good draft pick, the Pacers struck out on making major draft-day trades last week, Bob Kravitz of The Athletic writes. Indiana still has Malcolm Brogdon and Myles Turner under contract. Both players are known to be available on the trade market.

Pacers Will Sign Fanbo Zeng To Exhibit 10 Deal

10:34pm: Zeng will receive an Exhibit 10 contract, tweets James Boyd of The Indianapolis Star. Zeng had a pre-draft workout with the Pacers on June 8.

8:28pm: Fanbo Zeng, a Chinese forward who played for G League Ignite this season, will sign with the Pacers, tweets Shams Charania of The Athletic. Charania doesn’t offer specifics on the type of contract Zeng will receive, but he is expected to join the team for the Las Vegas Summer League.

Zeng appeared in nine G League games this season, averaging 3.8 points and 1.4 rebounds in 13.2 minutes per night. He originally committed to play at Gonzaga, but he changed his mind last year and opted for the Ignite.

Listed at 6’11” and 190 pounds, Zeng is ranked 30th on ESPN’s list of the best undrafted players.