The Indiana Pacers made a bold move on their off day, trading former All-Star Victor Oladipo to Houston as part of a multiteam deal that will send Brooklyn Nets swingman Caris LeVert to the Pacers along with a second round pick.
After a coaching change and a strong start to the season, Oladipo quickly rehabbed his trade value allowing the Pacers to jump into the fray as James Harden continued to force the Rockets’ hand to trade the superstar. As Shams Charania reported, here are all of the moving parts of the deal.
Sources: Full current trade:
Rockets: Victor Oladipo, Dante Exum, Rodions Kurucs, 3 BKN first-rounders (22, 24, 26), 1 MIL first (22, unprotected), 4 BKN 1st round swaps (21, 23, 25, 27)
Nets: James Harden
Pacers: Caris LeVert, 2nd-rounder
Cavs: Jarrett Allen, Taurean Prince
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) January 13, 2021
LeVert arrives with the Pacers after averaging 18.5 points, 6 assists and 4.5 rebounds in 12 games with the Nets so far this year. The 26-year-old wing will save the Pacers around $4.7 million in cap space this year with a contract that runs through the 2022-23 season, increasing about a million per season.
Oladipo leaves the Pacers after having a large impact on the organization with his dynamic game and personality. He sparked a new era of the Pacers after Paul George appeared to suck the oxygen out of the organization. As a former IU player, Oladipo embraced the city and the opportunity to shine and took full advantage by playing at an All-Star level while having the Fieldhouse eating out of his hand with some incredible late-game heroics.
With his profile raised and plenty of off-court opportunities catching his eye, Vic suffered a brutal knee (quad tendon) injury which left him rehabbing in Miami and his time away from the team and city appeared to have him looking elsewhere as he approached free agency. His use of Shams Charania to communicate with the team about his injury status made for a strange dynamic with the team and while things were gong smoothly under new coach Nate Bjorkgren, it is obvious with this deal that the Pacers didn’t intended to pay Oladipo a hefty raise when he hits the free agent market this offseason.
So, the fact that this trade happened so early in the season is a surprise but now the Pacers won’t be sweating the trade deadline and made sure to get a quality player in return.
Vic will always be a Hoosier and have favorable Pacers status. Hopefully, he remains healthy and works his game back into All-Star shape. If so, we’ll all be glad the Pacers sent him to the Western Conference.
Stay tuned, more to come on the trade.