Should the Pacers Rebuild?

Nathan Kremer, Sports Editor

Currently sitting at 15-29 and in 13th place in the Eastern Conference standings, it is time for the Indiana Pacers to begin the rebuilding process.

The Pacers have a roster that contains talented players, especially with All-Star Domantas Sabonis; however, keeping the entire team healthy has been a mess. There have also been issues figuring out how to play the big men, Sabonis and Myles Turner, together on the court. Overall, this Pacers team has a lot of problems, and they are trending towards missing the playoffs once again this season. General Manager Kevin Pritchard should opt to begin rebuilding the Pacers roster in order to restore excitement and prosperity once again in the organization.

With players like Sabonis, Turner, Malcolm Brogdon, Caris Levert, and Justin Holiday centering the roster, the Pacers could get valuable draft picks and young talent in return for these players who are in their prime.

Sabonis, Turner, and Holiday hold the greatest value for the Pacers. Sabonis is a two-time All-Star and has a unique skill set for a big man. He is a very efficient scorer down low as he shoots nearly 60 percent from the field. Any team could benefit from the addition of Sabonis as he averages nearly 20 points, 12 rebounds, and 4.6 assists per game.

Myles Turner is also a player who is garnering interest from fellow NBA teams. He is an elite shot blocker who averages three blocks a game. Any team would value having a player in the middle of their defense who could block shots at one of the highest rates in the league. Not to mention, Turner is able to stretch the floor on offense as he shoots 35 percent from three-point range. Standing at 7 feet tall, Turner’s ability to shoot from the outside causes headaches for the opposing teams.

Justin Holiday is a much different player from Sabonis and Turner. He is a wing known to be classified as a 3-and-D player. This means that he shoots the three-point shot at a high level while also being a great defender. This type of player is valuable in today’s NBA. The three-point shot is as important as ever, and with all of the great scorers in the league, the need for elite defenders is key.

Another reason the Pacers need to begin the rebuilding process is due to the amount of talent at the top of the NBA draft this year. The 2022 draft class has some great prospects, and the Pacers would benefit from being able to select one of them. These prospects include: Jabari Smith, Chet Holmgren, Paolo Banchero, Jaden Ivey, and Jalen Duren.

Any one of these top prospects would immediately spark excitement into the organization which is greatly needed for the Pacers. According to ESPN, the Pacers rank last in fan attendance in the NBA. On average, the Pacers have 13,850 fans at every game. This ranks dead last in the NBA by almost 500 fans.

The one bright spot about a potential Pacers rebuild is that exciting, young talent will be the focus of the roster for many years to come. Not to mention, the Pacers have witnessed a solid rookie campaign from Chris Duarte, who is averaging 13 points per game. He is a great piece to begin building a future roster around. With a high draft pick looming for the upcoming NBA draft combined with the potential of gaining more picks through trading players, the Pacers future could be very bright.