The Indiana Pacers could soon be taking a stick of dynamite to their roster.
Shams Charania and Bob Kravitz of The Athletic reported on Tuesday that the Pacers are moving towards a “substantial” rebuild and are expected to open up trade conversations around their top veterans. The Pacers are said to be receptive to trading guard Caris LeVert and either forward Domantas Sabonis or center Myles Turner. The report adds that 87-year-old owner Herb Simon, who has always demanded that the Pacers put out the best possible product on the floor, is now onboard with the idea of a rebuild.
All three trade candidates are dynamic players with the ability to put a contending team over the top. LeVert is a do-it-all wing with 20-point-per-game upside. Sabonis is a sort of Nikola Jokic Lite who has made back-to-back All-Star teams. Turner is a game-changing center who is one of the NBA’s perennial leaders in blocked shots and can also shoot close to 40 percent from three.
While Indiana just hired veteran coach Rick Carlisle, they are quickly fading into irrelevance at 10-16 in a very good Eastern Conference. The team did not make the playoffs last season after five straight first-round exits before that. After then failing to land one big-name star this past offseason, all the tea leaves now appear to be pointing the Pacers in the direction of hitting the hard reset button.
Photo: Brian Spurlock-USA Today Sports
The Philadelphia 76ers may finally have a palatable offer for Ben Simmons on the table courtesy of the Indiana Pacers.
Ian Begley of SportsNet New York reported on Tuesday that the Pacers have spoken with the Sixers about a potential Simmons trade and that swingman Caris LeVert was one of the players brought up in those communications.
The 27-year-old LeVert, who is signed through 2023, certainly has the talent to serve as the centerpiece in a Simmons deal. He put up 20.2 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 5.2 assists per game last season, which were all career-highs. LeVert was also the crown jewel of the Pacers’ return package in the multi-team blockbuster trade that sent James Harden to Brooklyn.
Indiana seems to be in dire need of a jolt after five straight first-round exits followed by a sub-.500 finsh last season. The signs that they might shake up the snow glove with a major trade are definitely there as well.
Indiana Pacers guard Caris LeVert will be out indefinitely after his trade physical turned up a significant health issue.
The Pacers announced Saturday that LeVert’s MRI turned up a small mass on his left kidney. The guard will undergo further testing, and there is no timetable for his return.
In a statement, LeVert thanked the Pacers for their “support and guidance” and added that he looked forward to being able to debut for the franchise.
LeVert was part of the four-team trade that sent James Harden to Brooklyn. It may be that this issue would not have been promptly discovered if LeVert had not undergone the medical exam that goes along with the trade. Shams Charania of The Athletic had reported earlier Saturday that the Pacers required an extra second-round pick and cash due to the issue turning up in LeVert’s physical.
LeVert, who has been plagued by other injuries during his NBA career, signed a three-year contract extension with the Brooklyn Nets in 2019.
The Houston Rockets got a massive haul in their trade of James Harden, and they are acquiring a star from Indiana as well.
The Rockets received guard Caris LeVert as part of the Harden deal with the Brooklyn Nets. The Rockets then moved LeVert to the Indiana Pacers in exchange for All-Star guard Victor Oladipo and a second-round pick.
The Nets received the prized piece in the trade — Harden, while Indiana is moving Oladipo.
Oladipo has reportedly wanted to leave the Pacers for months. He has dealt with significant injuries that fractured his relationship with the Pacers in recent years.
The 28-year-old guard has averaged 20.0 points, 5.7 rebounds, 4.2 assists and 1.7 steals per game this season. He made two All-Star teams during his time with Indiana, but he is set to be a free agent after the season.
Photo: Michael Tipton/Flickr via CC-BY-SA 2.0
Brooklyn Nets guard Caris LeVert suffered a thumb injury on Sunday that forced him to sit out Tuesday night’s game against the Utah Jazz, and he is now going to miss an extended period of time.
LeVert underwent tests this week that revealed he has ligament damage in his right thumb, and Shams Charania of The Athletic reports that he will be sidelined for several weeks.
The Nets are signing veteran guard Iman Shumpert now that LeVert is expected to be out for several games.
LeVert is averaging 16.8 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.0 assists this season, so his absence will be tough for the Nets to overcome. Brooklyn considers him an important part of their core and signed him to an extension during the offseason that reflects that.
LeVert fell to the 20th overall pick in the 2016 NBA Draft because of foot issues, and he has battled his fair share of injuries since joining the Nets.
The Brooklyn Nets are keeping another member of their core together for the next few years.
Caris LeVert has agreed to a three-year, $52.5 million contract extension with the Nets, ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski reported on Sunday night. LeVert is set to earn $2.6 million in the upcoming season, so the contract extension does not start until the following year. That means LeVert would be under contract with the Nets through the 2022-2023 season.
The extension means the Nets now have Kyrie Irving, Kevin Durant, DeAndre Jordan, Spencer Dinwiddie and LeVert all under contract for at least the next three seasons.
LeVert, 25, averaged 13.7 points, 3.9 rebounds and 3.8 assists per game last season. The former No. 20 overall pick averaged 21 points per game during the team’s playoff series against the Sixers. He was limited to 40 regular season games last year due to an ankle injury that turned out to be not as bad as initially expected.
The playoff races are well underway in the NBA, and things are very competitive in both conferences. It looks likely that only a handful of games will separate fifth from eighth in certain cases, and the margins between making and missing the playoffs will be small.
Most contenders have key figures who will have a big say in where their teams land. These aren’t always the obvious stars, but a key name who’s returning from injury or picking up the slack at the right time. Here are 10 key players who will have a big say in the playoff races.
10. Buddy Hield, G, Kings
Hield has had a breakout year this season, but he hasn’t always been in the good graces of coach Dave Joerger, much to the frustration of some other players. The Kings are very much in the thick of the Western Conference playoff race, and they’ll need Hield to play fearlessly — and have the trust of his coach — down the stretch. If he can play to his capabilities — like when he made 53.4 percent of his threes in January — the Kings will have a huge weapon as they chase a playoff spot.
The Brooklyn Nets are set to get guard Caris LeVert back sooner rather than later.
LeVert, who dislocated his foot in November, is progressing toward five-on-five practices, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN. He has a chance to return to game action before the All-Star break.
This is great news for both LeVert and the Nets, especially when you consider just how bad his injury looked at the time. In his 14 games, LeVert had been averaging a career-best 18.4 points per game, and his return will be a boost to a Nets team that finds itself firmly in the playoff hunt.
Brooklyn Nets guard Caris LeVert suffered what looked like an incredibly gruesome leg injury during Monday night’s game against the Minnesota Timberwolves, but he received some great news after undergoing tests.
There was speculation that LeVert may have suffered a fracture like the one Gordon Hayward sustained at the start of last season, but the 24-year-old has been diagnosed with a dislocated right foot. He has some ligament damage, but the outcome could not have been much better given how bad the injury looked. What’s even more encouraging is that LeVert is expected to play again this season.
You could tell by the outpouring of support LeVert received from the NBA community that the injury news was expected to be far worse. The fact that he was able to avoid any fractures or broken bones was very fortunate.
LeVert is having a breakout season for Brooklyn, as he entered Monday’s game averaging 19 points per game on 47.7 percent shooting. It’s unclear exactly how much time he will miss.
Caris LeVert received an outpouring of support from across the NBA following the gruesome injury he suffered on Monday.
Just before halftime of the game between the Brooklyn Nets and Minnesota Timberwolves, LeVert landed awkwardly on his right leg. The looks on the faces of his teammates gave the appearance they knew LeVert suffered a serious injury.
It didn’t take long for players from across the NBA to offer their well wishes, prayers, and support via social media.