Finally, perhaps Pacers president Larry Bird has finally done something during his front office tenure to help the team.
After what has seemed like an eternity, the Pacers have found a point guard that might actually benefit the team and ACTUALLY make Indiana better.
On Wednesday afternoon, the Pacers acquired former New Orleans point guard Darren Collison and forward James Posey in a deal that sent Troy Murphy from the Pacers to New Jersey. The four-team deal also sent Courtney Lee from the Nets to Houston and the Rockets moved swingman Trevor Ariza to New Orleans.
The Pacers have known for quite some time that T.J. Ford was certainly not the answer at the point as he got locked in coach Jim O'Brien's dog house for most of the second half of the season. Collison could certainly be that player as the young guard out of UCLA averaged 12.4 ppg. and 5.7 assists per game as the backup to Chris Paul. When Paul was out due to injury, Collison averaged 18.8 ppg. and 9.1 assists per contest.
"We're excited to add Darren to the strong core of young players already on our roster," Pacers president Larry Bird said in a statement. "He's a dynamic young point guard and we believe that he will be a key piece of our goal of building a team that the fans in Indiana deserve."
Finally some substance to go with the usual 'blah blah' that Bird tends to tell the fans to try and keep us placated and buying tickets. Well, news flash, not many people are buying into what you've been selling the past few years Larry, but maybe this move can stem the rapidly rising apathy towards this team.
The move does give the Nets a player, in Murphy, who averaged nearly a double-double per game for the Pacers (13.3 ppg. and 9.2 rpg.) Posey will take up some of those numbers as he has career averages of 8.8 ppg. and 4.8 rpg. over his 11 seasons in the league.
Essentially the Pacers traded Murphy's $11.9 million salary for next season in exchange for Posey's $13.3 million over two years.
Posey's inclusion is simply a numbers game as the cash strapped Hornets needed to dump some salary and the Pacers agreed to take it on in exchange for a potentially exciting young talent in Collison. Indiana got its point guard for the next decade and can pair him with youngsters, Danny Granger and Roy Hibbert.
This year's draft picks are still a bit unknown, but University of Cincinnati prospect Lance Stephenson looked good in summer league games and is an intriguing talent. If Bird's leap of faith in the upside of Fresno State's Paul George pays off then the Pacers might have finally begun to emerge from its downward spiral.