this is the only place I’ve seen PG mentioned as a “tradable” star. Indy is a small and unsexy market, they’re not going to (and should not) trade a top 10 player in his prime. cities/markets like that have to hold on to superstars when they have them, unless they’re disgruntled and force their way out (melo/Denver, cp3/NO).
there is no reason to think PG is disgruntled, since the experiment of him at 4 was short lived and he had his best season of his career — not to mention Indy signed a small ball four in Thad young, indicating that PG will only play four in certain small ball situations, which he does not seem to have a problem with. he didn’t want to play up a position coming back from a brutal injury, and the team wisely did not force him to.
there is also no reason to think Indy won’t be competitive in the middle of the pack in the east. they made improvements, both through signings and through player development, and the east shouldn’t be much different. although Boston will probably be slightly better, Atlanta will likely be slightly worse, Toronto is unlikely to repeat or better their 2015 season, and Charlotte and Detroit are returning more or less the same team.
the annoying lakers rumors happen with every single player from Southern California — PG, derozan, Westbrook, etc. Russ and derozan re-signed without giving LA so much as a meeting, what’s to think PG will go to LA just because he grew up there? the lakers front office is a mess, their youngsters haven’t been as promising as hoped (Randle has shown no star potential, and Russell had an underwhelming rookie year, ingram of course is yet to be seen). there’s a more promising rookie right at home in Myles, why would PG leave for a team with less promise in a tougher conference? Indiana is pretty meh but warm weather and Hollywood has shown to have much less of an attraction in FA than the media always seems to think. aside from PG leaving in FA, who could LA offer that would be a realistically worthwhile trade? Russell and Randle? no thanks. ingram and next years pick? maybe, but would LA really give up two top five picks and sacrifice their future for a PG to join a bad team?
moral of the story: stop giving me a heart attack by making me think PG is leaving my pacers! thanks for the write up, everything else was great haha.