Former Indiana Basketball star Victor Oladipo may have a new team next season.
The Indiana Pacers’ season came crashing down at terminal velocity. A super-human start to the NBA Bubble by TJ Warren propelled the team to the four seed in the playoffs only to be swept by the Miami Heat. It is worth noting the team did not have Domantas Sabonis, its best player this season.
Now, coach Nate McMillan has been fired (rather unfairly, I might add) and the team is going to make a push for Mike D’Antoni and other high-profile coaches. This anticipated change begs the question: will Victor Oladipo stay in the Hoosier state, or will he be traded?
Oladipo was a top 15 player in the NBA just two years ago when he won the league’s most improved player award and was voted to the All-NBA third team. A devastating injury to his quadriceps in 2019 has kept him from returning to that form. Oladipo just reached the point where he could play without a minutes restriction a week ago.
His path to NBA stardom has been unconventional. He went from a three-star recruit to the 2nd overall pick in the draft, then from somewhat of a disappointment in the NBA to a star. Now, he’s in another phase of his rollercoaster career with a potential new team on the horizon.
With the changes about to take place in Indiana, will they attempt to resign a player coming off of a bad injury? His contract is up after the 2021 season, and Pacers’ ownership is typically very wary of spending too much money. On top of this, contenders may come calling for Oladipo’s services. His ability to score and defend makes him an asset on any roster, and if they could just rent him for a single season, a team like the Los Angeles Lakers may be enticed by the veteran two-guard.
Several NBA journalists have speculated that Indiana might make some major roster changes in the next year. A portion of them also believes that Oladipo won’t be on the roster next season for the reasons listed above.
Oladipo’s situation will be an interesting one to monitor this offseason.