Yesterday afternoon the Pacers were part of a monster blockbuster trade in the NBA where they sent Victor Oladipo to the Houston Rockets in exchange for Caris LeVert from the Brooklyn Nets.
Oladipo’s contract was expiring and there were several reports that he wanted out of Indiana. With Oladipo likely not re-signing this off-season, flipping him for a younger player under contract for multiple years seems like a win on paper.
LeVert is originally from Columbus, Ohio and played his college ball at the University of Michigan. He is in his 5th year in the NBA, playing all 5 years with the Nets. LeVert was actually originally drafted by the Pacers but eventually traded to bring Thad Young to Indy.
LeVert has gotten better every year in his short career, and had a really impressive run of games in the NBA’s bubble. LeVert is averaging over 18 points a game in the 2021 season and is averaging 29/5/8 in 4 starts this season.
With this trade the Pacers got younger and more control over the contracts of their starting 5. The oldest player in the Pacers’ starting lineup, when fully healthy, is Malcolm Brogdon at 28.
My knee-jerk reaction to the trade was that the Pacers didn’t get enough for their 2-time all-star. However, the more I looked into it and the more research I did on LeVert and what he brings to the Pacers the more I started to love this deal for Indiana.