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While a lot of the attention in the offseason has been switched on to the Warriors and the Knick this offseason, the Pacers have been building a masterpiece under the radar. Let's take a look at the significance of the roster they've been putting together.
Jeff Teague- This point guard comes from the 2014-15 coach of the year, Mike Budenholzer who transformed the whole Hawks team. This was a team that was second in defensive rating in the league last season, only falling behind the Spurs. However, as good as this team was, they didn't have a superstar which hurt their chances dearly of scoring when it came to the playoffs. Now Jeff Teague is a guy that likes to get the offense going. He is a fast paced guard. One of the biggest things Teague brings to the floor though, is his shooting. Last year, Monta Ellis had a rough year. The paint was very tight and his offense didn't thrive. Now that Teague, a 40% 3-point shooter and a great player off the dribble, is on the team, this will open up the paint for the rest of the team.
Myles Turner- This guy made his mark in the playoffs last year. He's proven he has a place in the league. His toughness mentality is amazing and you know he'll be learning a lot from big Al Jefferson on toughness. This just might be Myles Turner's break out season as he didn't really have a chance last season to do so. Expect big things from him defensively.
Paul George: He is star of the team. Of course with Paul George, you will know what you're getting out of him, a lot of offense and a lot of defense. With a small forward that can guard guys like KD and LeBron James you know that Pacers are going to have an easier time winning against these elite teams.
Thaddeus Young: This is probably one of the most underrated acquisitions that have happened this off-season. Thaddeus Young is known to be a good solid defender. He is one of the leading power forwards in steals for a few years now. Young has a pretty good post game and can somewhat stretch the floor. But the ability to put the ball on the deck and rebound efficiently from the power forward sport is what stands out. Young is an athletic power forward. He can drive better than most of them. And to top that off, he can rebound. This left handed big men is a big piece since the Pacers lacked good big men last season. Young brings a lot to the table that a lot f power forwards don't have. He cuts and runs the floor. You know him and Teague are going to be having a great time in transition.
Monta Ellis: This year is the year that Monta Ellis has a comeback year. It was rough for him, but for two reason. Number 1, he didn't have many big men to play pick and roll/pop with. This year he has Jefferson and Young. Number 2, with more shooters the paint will be open more. I have a good feeling about Ellis this year.
The Bench: Al Jefferson is going to be the guy to come off the bench to destroy the other team. They are going to ask him to score and rebound. He will be used constantly in pick and roll with Paul George, Monta Ellis, and Jeff Teague a ton.
Aaron Brooks is the guy that I'm so happy they grabbed, besides D.J. Augstine, I think Aaron Brooks is one of the best bench players you could have. This is a guy that is know to be able to shoot and score. But not only can he score, he has a big effect on his teammates. His ability to pass is amazing. The acquisition of Brooks is very important to the success of the Pacers success.
The other players they have, guys like Rodney Stuckey and and C.J. Miles can just flat out score. Glenn Robinson III might be a guy that can really provide a lift offensively as well as Joe Young. They also have a good defensive center in Rakeem Christmas if someone were to go down. Their bench is something that they can count on.
As you can see, the Pacers are on track to win this season. If they can stay healthy, their limit is unknown. They are going to be a very fast paced team that is going to push tempo. To me, they have a roster that has a chance at taking down the Cavs. I can't wait to see this team in action!