The Indiana Pacers struck out on Gordon Hayward and now it seems they have their eyes on a new target in NBA free agency— Sacramento Kings forward Bogdan Bogdanovic.
According to NBC Sports Bay Area’s James Ham, the Pacers are a team ‘in play’ for a sign-and-trade deal for Bogdanovic— potentially by including Myles Turner in a deal to match salaries.
A salary of $18 million per season for [Bogdan] Bogdanovic sounds like a lot, but it’s the going rate at this point in the NBA, especially for a versatile player like Bogdanovic.
It appears that there might be at least one additional team in play.
The Indiana Pacers struck out on a Gordon Hayward trade with the Boston Celtics when a source confirmed that Boston’s trade demands became too excessive. Indy was willing to part with center Myles Turner in the transaction, but when the Celtics asked for more, the Pacers passed.
The expectation appears to be that Bogdanovic will be able to command near his asking price of $18 million per season after Hayward managed to command a four-year, $120 million deal. The Atlanta Hawks appear to be hot in pursuit of him and they have no shortage of cap space to work with.
If the Pacers want to get a deal done and pull off a sign-and-trade for Bogdanovic, it will require trade value to complete. He is a restricted free agent and the Kings have the option to simply match any offer sheet he ends up signing— providing additional leverage.
There were also reports about the Pacers’ interest in a sign-and-trade for Fred VanVleet. That never came close to fruition since it was known he was going to return to the Toronto Raptors— netting a four year, $85 million contract to return to the team. Bogdanovic is a more attainable target.
The Indiana Pacers are running out of options to make changes to their team. TJ Warren thrived at the four spot in the NBA bubble and it’s clear a two big-man arrangement is not viable to compete at a high-level in today’s league except under very rare circumstances. A trade for Bogdan Bogdanovic would enable them to go smaller and faster with more shooting.
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