2018-19 Off the Glass Team Preview Series: Indiana Pacers
With the 2018-19 NBA season is rapidly approaching, Off the Glass is previewing all 30 NBA teams. Today, we'll take a look at the Indiana Pacers.
48-34, 2nd in the Central Division. Lost 4-3 in the first-round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs.
The Indiana Pacers were the surprise team in the Eastern Conference last season. Though they lost their star player, Paul George, in the off-season, Victor Oladipo stepped up his game and led the Pacers to a remarkable 48 wins. However, that is not to say players like Bojan Bogdanavic, Myles Turner, and Thaddeus Young did not rise to the occasion as well. Indiana was an extremely well-rounded team and they might be even better sooner rather than later.
Lance Stephenson (SG/SF), Al Jefferson (C), Glenn Robinson (SG/SF)
Tyreke Evans (PG/SG/SF), Aaron Holiday (PG), Kyle O'Quinn (C), Doug McDermott (SF)
Player to Watch:
Though the Pacers were certainly a good team last year, I would project them to be even better in the 2018-19 NBA season. Indy's new star, Victor Oladipo, has reportedly continued to improve and he won't be asked to run the offense as much, with players like Tyreke Evans and possibly Aaron Holiday taking the reigns of the offense.
Players like Myles Turner, Domantas Sabonis, TJ Leaf, and other are only going to get better. If Nate McMillan, who just received a contract extension, can capitalize with their current roster and grow their youth, the Pacers' future continues to grow brighter.
Tyreke Evans doesn't fit within McMillan's offensive scheme and it throws everything off. Competition between Domatas Sabonis and Myles Turner for more playing time at center could result in some unrest in the locker room. If things go south, the Pacers could find themselves fighting for a playoff spot in March and April.
Victor Oladipo does prove to be the "mini-LeBron" his trainer has proclaimed him to be. Tyreke Evans takes some pressure off of Oladipo's play-making responsibilities. Myles Turner shows improvement as a rebounder and continues to improve upon his offensive versatility. If things go right, Indiana could be a top two or three team in the East.
2018-19 Record Prediction:
51-31, 1st in the Central Division