If the Indiana Pacers plan to get back to the postseason, they may have to make a few moves. They lost guard Lance Stephenson to the Charlotte Hornets and then lost swingman Paul George to a horrific injury during Team USA’s training camp in Las Vegas. One scorer that is clearly available is Minnesota Timberwolves’ guard Kevin Martin.
However, Larry Coon of Basketball Insiders doesn’t see the Pacers dealing for Martin.
The problem with the Pacers is that they won’t go over the luxury tax. So while they have the full disabled player exception to replace Paul George for the year, they can’t afford to spend much of it. I don’t see how they acquire Kevin Martin without sending out comparable salary in return. So where’s the deal that makes sense for both teams?
I think Kevin Martin still has some good value as a player, but it’s questionable whether with $21 million remaining his contract remains a value contract.
Although it may be difficult to admit and painful, the best bet for the Pacers may be to start trading away pieces like power forward David West and center Roy Hibbert and prepare for a long season. They could clear out cap space, find an impact player in the draft and be ready to rebuild around George, who is still just 24 years old.
Martin averaged 19.1 points, 3.0 rebounds and 1.8 assists per game while shooting 43.0% from the field, 38.7% from beyond the arc and 89.1% from the free throw line last season.
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