Indiana Pacers Hit Hard By Injury Bug With Trade Deadline Looming

The Indiana Pacers get hit hard at the worst possible moment – just before the trade deadline.

Currently, teams across the league are making their final assessments of players, both on their own and on other teams, to determine if any deals or swaps need to be made. The Pacers are no exception, they’ve been in the scuttlebutt trade all season and are currently sitting at 17-30.

But things have complicated for the team at Circle City recently thanks to four-way injuries, many of them to players who have been the subject of commercial talks about the league.

One such injury belongs to Miles Turner, who is treating a stress reaction in his left foot. The team announced the injury last week.

The Pacers struggled without a defensive strut and will keep moving forward. A timeline for Turner’s return to action has not been announced, but reports indicate that it will take a few weeks for the seven-year-old veteran to be able to return to Earth. Indiana has struggled without the blockbuster anchoring their defense – they’ve conceded 116.8 points per 100 ownership in four games without him so far.

“In the last two games, he’s felt something,” Pacers coach Rick Carlisle said of Turner’s foot on Jan. “So we’ll check it out.”

A few days after Turner’s diagnosis was announced, Domantas Sabonis, another indoor threat in Indiana, injured his left ankle in a game against the Los Angeles Lakers. He landed awkwardly on a Lakers player while he came down with a rebound and rolled his ankle.

After the match, Carlisle described the injury as “significant”. However, he did provide more clarity on the timing of a possible return the next day. “There is no set time, but I think he will miss at least some matches,” the coach said.

Sabonis, as seen in the video above from James Boyd of the Indianapolis Star, was getting some work on the field before playing the Pacers on January 24th. He could be back sooner rather than later, although there should be no hurry to get Sabonis back for 13th at the Indiana Club. – Sits until 100% correct.

Both big men have been the subject of trade rumors for the Pacers this season, although Turner’s name has been more prevalent in trade talks than Sabonis’. These injuries could, in theory, change the commercial value of both players as the receiving team will have to think about what the injury will mean for their new player in the future.

However, neither appears to be out for long, and an all-star break – a good chance of rest and recovery – is less than a month away. While the Pacers will be alarmed that these injuries could affect commercial discussions, given that both players’ absences will not be long, it is unlikely that either player will see their commercial value significantly affected.

On the bright side, Indiana now has the opportunity to give playtime to some of the younger, older men. In the absence of Turner and Sabonis, Goga Petadzes and Isaiah Jackson formed the blue and gold rotations in the paint, and the pairing filled in brilliantly despite not having had several minutes earlier in the season.

“[Goga] He’s a very good all-around player in fifth place…his rebound is a big factor. “I like the way he feels on the game,” Carlisle said of Petadze, who averaged 12.3 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in Turner’s first four missed games. “He can be a central point there, passes it well, knows how to move against the substitution. His offer is good…this is a great opportunity for him.”

Meanwhile, Jackson impressed many with his defense and mobility. Carlisle described these games as a good learning opportunity for the rookie player, who scored in double digits for the first time in his career against Golden State last Thursday. Once another center comes back from injury, Jackson could lose his rotation spot, but he’s making the most of his chances of playing and giving the organization confidence that he can be a contributor in the future.

“For me personally, it’s great to step in and play because at the end of the day I’m a bird,” Jackson said after his 15-point performance. “Sitting on the sideline is fine, picking things up from the vets and stuff, but actually playing around, being there, it’s fun.”

The Pacers’ confidence in their young players under the age of 23 is paramount. The team is well below 0.500 and may be on its way to rebuilding – knowing they have a promising young talent sitting on the bench could make important or risky deals easier.

The current injuries to the Pacers do not stop at home. Starting point guard Malcolm Brogdon, the team’s biggest producer in assists and off-court captain, has been dealing with soreness in the right hock for about a month now. He has played only three games since December 15, and in two of those performances he has had less than 20 minutes of play. It was hard to get over the pain.

“Just be careful, that’s what this is about, be careful,” Brogdon said after exercising earlier this month. He does everything in his power to avoid tearing the hock. “It’s all about pain management. It’s all about staying in the right direction. You just don’t want days where you take steps back.”

To continue moving in the right direction, the Pacers have shut down Brogdon for at least 10 days, Carlisle explained on January 22. Brogdon played three nights ago in a win over the Lakers, but didn’t move in the direction of the recovery the Pacers had taken. wanted.

“Malcolm will be shutting down for at least 10 days to begin a rehabilitation program that puts him in a strong Achilles,” Carlisle said. “We haven’t made the progress we need to make.”

Brogdon cannot be traded this season after receiving a contract extension prior to the campaign, so his injury doesn’t have much of an impact on the Pacers’ trading deadline plans. However, it does allow Blue and Gold to give more playing time to rookie guards Chris Duarte, Duane Washington and Kiefer Sykes, which has been beneficial so far as all three ball players have progressed and played well in recent games.

Dealing with Caris LeVert with a sore right calf recently increased the need for the three inexperienced guards, but LeVert was back in the lineup on Monday and played with normal minutes. LeVert, like many Pacers, has been mentioned in trade discussions throughout the NBA, so his return to action gives Indiana a chance to showcase his skills before the February 10 trading deadline. The six-year professional has averaged 24.5 points per game in his last 10 matches.

Duarte, in particular, thrived in his expanded role. The rookie hit a career high with a 27-point lead against the Warriors last week, averaging nearly 16 points per game in 2022. The lottery pick gives the Pacers a glimpse into their future as it will be the piece Indiana builds about moving forward.

“We are just hungry, you know. We got the energy we want to put in there and just try to win and play hard,” Duarte said recently of playing with his young teammates.

The Pacers have a lot at stake right now, and the trading deadline is still just a few weeks away. Strong play from young players is sure to give the front office some confidence in the team’s direction, but ill-timed injuries can make deals and wins difficult. How Indiana copper will navigate in the coming weeks will be clear, and the range of injuries will give decision makers more factors to consider in roster-building discussions.

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