First and foremost, beyond anything we feel for the team as fans, I wish Paul a speedy and full recovery. It sucks as a fan to see your teams future flushed down the toilet, but I can't even imagine the physical and emotional pain that he must be in right now.
That being said, when I read the headline my heart sank. I'm sure many, if not all of you had the same feeling. Next season is done, maybe even our future beyond that. I can sit here all night and think about all the horrible things to come from this, how this just seems like another mark on the what has become a book of bad marks for Pacers fans. But I don't want to do that anymore. So, lets hopefully keep this thread in a positive light(as best we can) and focus on the good things(however small or little they may be), that can potentially come from this.
I'll start: The Pacers were not going to win anything next year. The second Lance left, he took any chance the Pacers had of winning the Championship with him. Paul George said himself that he was going to look to taking 25 shots a game next season, which I feel like would have had to have been okay'd/supported by the Pacers management for him to say that. Ultimately, it would have likely resulted in us watching a stagnate offense play hero ball, that would have likely had us barely sneak into the playoffs just to lose in the first round.
Now? As good of competitors as this team has, I doubt we make the playoffs. IF we are to make the playoffs, it will be because Roy Hibbert has a monster season - which would be the best thing that could happen for the future of this team anyway. We know he is capable of being a beast, if he gains his mojo back, we would essentially be getting the 2 headed monster we all hoped for in George/Hibbert next season. Even if we do miss the playoffs, I still expect Hibbert to gain a lot of confidence being one of the main focus' this year, then add a lottery pick to that and we have a young prospect that would be the third player needed to potentially bring us back to Championship contender status. On top of both of those factors, we will give Solomon Hill plenty of opportunities to grow this season.
Again, this is just terrible news for PG and the Pacers. I'm not denying that, but hopefully we can have one light-hearted thread putting some sort of bright side to this tragedy the best we can. I need to only think of potential good scenarios as I don't wanna spend another Pacers season thinking about nothing but the worst.