There are many ways to add talent to your roster in the NBA, that is obvious. Every fan of the Pacers is right now studying the free agent listings, looking for people we can identify that make sense for Indiana from a financial and need standpoint. I think most of the ideas we've mentioned on here are probably being looked at at least somewhat by the Pacers front office.
And no doubt, many trade proposals are out there. As teams all jockey for positioning, opportunities for deals will occur. Again, most of the people we have mentioned as "tradeable" from our perspective is likely an accurate list: Jeff Foster and T.J. Ford are both probably our 2 most realistic people to deal, probably in that order, from the wants and needs of teams around the league.
But today I want to mention 2 different ways of acquiring players that I haven't heard mentioned yet by most of this board, and I think it is time that we examine the possibilities of both, and who might be a likely partner for us.
1. A "sign and trade" of Jarrett Jack.
2. using our approximately 2,000,000 trade exception to acquire a low salaried player from another team who is not a current free agent.
Let's examine both possibilities.
I mentioned a long time ago that I thought, due to the timeline of events, that Jarrett Jack would likely not be brought back, and that a sign and trade deal of him made sense. I wavered on that due to all the positive comments coming from our own players, such as Danny Granger, about the positive contributions of Jack, but now I have come around back to where I have started: jack won't be back, and we will likely sign and trade him to a team who values his contributions and has low cost assets they are willing to deal to us to mitigate the financial cost to them.
It is pretty clear that no contending team will be satisfied with Jarrett Jack as their starter, but in a backup point guard role (along with the ability to play occasionally at the "2"), he fits many contenders needs that we aren't currently thinking about.
Think outside the box just a bit and you can see how Jack makes sense for many teams we aren't thinking about yet:
BOSTON needs a player like Jack to sub for Rondo, and to occasionally play along side him.
HOUSTON makes sense for Jack as a guy to back up Aaron Brooks, and to play some minutes alongside him....which is something their current backup Kyle Lowry cannot do.
DENVER drafted Ty Lawson, but Jack makes much more sense for them, as he could theoretically back up Chauncey Billups and also replace Dahntay Jones, who most likely will leave the Nuggets as a free agent, perhaps to us.
CHARLOTTE, if they happen to lose Ray Felton, would make alot of sense to end up with Larry Brown to reduce their payroll and be a tandem duo with DJ Augustine.
Their are likely a bunch more teams out there who, for minimal financial cost to their overall budget, would love to add Jack to their mix.
Our front office needs to quietly let Jack and his agent know that we are amenable to a deal with other teams structured like this, so they can shop him to many more suitors....I would predict that has already likely happened.
An additional item to remember about Jarrett Jack's status would be this: AN AGREEMENT NOT TO MATCH AN OFFER SHEET TO JACK COULD BE A "HIDDEN" PART OF ANOTHER DEAL WE MAKE WITH ANOTHER TEAM.
I'll have a possible example of this idea, just for illustration purposes, at the end of this article.
I also would be greatly interested to hear some possibilities for sign and trade deals involving Jack, especially for players signed for slightly less money than Jack will likely get and who are under contract and not current free agents.
Everyone, just think outside the box some and you'll see some interesting possibilities I promise you.
The second idea is to use your roughly 2,000,000 trade exception to acquire a player basically for nothing.
Anyone who knows salary cap rules knows that this is a possibility, and it expands the universe of players we can consider acquiring from players who are free agents currently all the way to guys who are currently under contract, and therefore aren't being considered by any of you.
Why would a team want to just "give" us a player for nothing you ask?
So they can clear salary to try and sign a bigger free agent, and they need the money to clear extra money to sweeten the offer in year number 1 of the deal!
Let's look at Portland, for instance, and how a deal with them doing this would be possible....again, this is just an example:
-Portland wants a little extra space to try and sweeten their offer for Hedo Terkoglu. An extra million or 2 off their cap would sweeten the deal enough to get him signed.
-Portland calls Indiana (and other teams with trade exceptions) and starts auctioning off their less important players.
-Indiana answers and says yes, we like one of your low salaried players (lets just say we like Rudy Fernandez, for example).
-Portland then could trade Fernandez to Indiana for a future second round conditional draft pick, and then the deal would be legal under the CBA, as I understand it.
This same scenario would work with any team who wants to clear cap space, and is even more likely to happen with teams almost at or slightly over the luxury tax. A team like Utah would love to give up a player they didn't need for example, if it could save them enough money to get under the dreaded dollar for dollar luxury tax.
Almost any player drafted by any team after about the 12th pick (if my calculations are correct) would have a salary cheap enough to do this with, as long as they are still on their rookie deal. So, if you want to see some more possibilities, look at guys drafted in the last couple of years that aren't playing much on contenders who are wanting to make a push at an existing free agent or want to shave off their guaranteed salaries.
Again, open your mind to the possibilities....Bird and Morway are creative, so you can bet things like this are being explored.
Let's look at a possible scenario involving a contender that involves both of these ideas, just to try and examine how it could work.
Let's say for examples sake that the Pacers want to bring in Dahntay Jones as a backup wing man.
STEP 1: Strike an agreement with Denver for a player the Nuggets likely would covet, Jeff Foster.
STEP 2: Agree to terms with Jones, and have Denver execute a sign and trade deal with Jones in exchange for the contract of Jeff Foster.
Assuming you sign Jones for somewhere around 3 years, 15 million, and if it were me I'd do it in a flat 5 per year. (This is just an example, I'm not actually advocating this exact deal, it is just for illustration).
By trading Foster, you have now obtained Jones, saved 1.5 million this year approximately, and not had to use any of your MLE to do it.
STEP 3: In exchange for doing this deal, the Pacers make a side agreement with Denver to agree not to match an offer sheet they could make for Jarrett Jack.
STEP 4: In exchange for agreeing to step 3, Denver agrees to trade us the rights to Ty Lawson once he is signed to his rookie deal for a conditional second round pick. This they can do because we have a "trade exception" large enough to handle Lawson's contract. (Again, this is just an example, I am not saying it is realistic, wise, or going to happen necessarily).
Again, the Pacers acquire 2 helpful players in moves that are revenue nuetral, and have not yet had to use any of their MLE or total available money to spend to stay under the luxury tax threshold of approximately 8,000,000.
Once again, I am not using the above scenario as anything likely to happen in its exact form, I just came up with it to try and give an example of how complicated and creative we may have to be in order to fill holes on our roster, and I wanted to have a scenario that had all possibilities in it at one time. I'm not advocating signing Jones (in fact I don't think we are interested in him in reality), or dealing with Denver, nor am I advocating trading Foster necessarily (though I probably would explore it personally).
Just keep in mind that there are hidden possibilities and creative solutions that most haven't considered yet, and I wanted to add some light to the situation as I see it.
Of course, I could be all wet and all wrong, and if so I am sure Count55 will correct me....but I don't think I am.
I'd be interested in hearing which players currently under contract for salaries under 2 million bucks that you would be interested in trying to trade for, and who of players fitting that criterial would be available.
I'd be interested in which teams might be interested in Jack, and who those teams have on their rosters you feel would be worthy to trade for him that also would be slightly less money than he will sign for. If you use as a baseline around 5,000,000 per year for Jack, any player you suggest would need to have a contract around 4,000,000 by my theory.
My understanding is that any sign and trade for Jack would have to be a 1 for 1 deal, no additional players added.....unless again we use our trade exception creatively in a separate but simultaneous deal with that same team.
Just a few things to think about over the holiday weekend........
As always, the above is just my opinion.......