NBA free agency: Pacers planning to be ‘super aggressive’ this summer

By E.Jay Zarett 2 May 2019 182
NBA free agency: Pacers planning to be ‘super aggressive’ this summer

The Pacers are looking to add major pieces to their roster this summer.

Indiana enters the offseason with at least $43 million in cap space and general manager Kevin Pritchard told reporters Wednesday the team plans to be “super aggressive” in free agency.

"We'll go after 'em," Pritchard said at a press conference. "We'll make the pitches. We're not afraid.”

Pritchard said the team’s strategy is to “think big.”

“It may happen, it may not happen,” Pritchard said. “One thing we believe very strongly in is that once you sign with us we'll do our best to make you feel comfortable here and we'll do that with our daily actions."

The Pacers finished the season with a 48-34 record and earned the fifth seed in the Eastern Conference. They were swept by the Celtics in the first round of the playoffs.

Indiana will have the 18th pick in the 2019 NBA Draft.

"I'm more excited about the draft and free agency than I've ever been," Pritchard said. "There's such a high degree of variability. I don't know if it's even possible to come up with every scenario. … Almost 40 percent of the players in this league are free agents (so) you're going to have unbelievable movement.

“I think we have to be prepared to be opportunistic and I think we have to be able to do it very quickly. You have to be able to move at a moment's notice, and you have to be in those conversations.”

Pritchard said he’ll pitch upcoming free agents on the Pacers culture, as the team has reached the playoffs in eight of the last nine seasons.

"We believe we are player-centric," Pritchard said. "The players know they'll be taken care of and they know we're going to win. The more you can prove you will take care of your players and you develop your players and you're all about winning, then you have a chance."

Pacers guard Victor Oladipo suffered a devastating season-ending leg injury in late January. Pritchard said the star is “coming along really nicely” but he’s unsure when Oladipo will return to the court.

 

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E.Jay Zarett

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