INDIANAPOLIS — The Pacers reportedly are considering a drastic rebuild, meaning some of their top players could become available as the NBA trade market develops this winter.
Their combined trade value likely wasn’t damaged in Wednesday’s blowout win over the Knicks.
The Post has reported the Knicks have had interest in versatile Indiana center Myles Turner, who leads the NBA with 2.8 blocked shots per game after finishing atop the league in that category last season.
Turner, former Nets guard Caris LeVert, big man Domantas Sabonis and guard Malcolm Brogdan each scored between 15 and 22 points against the Knicks. That foursome met Tuesday with Pacers coach Rick Carlisle, according to a report in the Indianapolis Star. A source told the newspaper that Indiana still is “trying to win … but it doesn’t mean trades can’t happen.”
The meeting with Carlisle was held after another report Tuesday in The Athletic stated that the Pacers are “moving toward a rebuild” and “receptive” to trade discussions centered around LeVert and “either” Turner or Sabonis.
Evan Fournier scored only seven points and hasn’t played in the fourth quarter in each of the past two games. He said he believes he contracted food poisoning ahead of Tuesday’s win over the Spurs.
“I was doing better before the two games, had a terrible steak in San Antonio,” Fournier said. “Fighting it, had food poisoning, came over me. Have to get right [Thursday], day off, I thought I was playing better and better to be honest, it’s a shame, because the steak was very good. The next day it messed me up.”
After starting one game, Nerlens Noel was sidelined again, this time with a sore lower back. He was replaced in the starting lineup by Taj Gibson with Mitchell Robinson playing 19 minutes off the bench despite landing on his tailbone in a hard crash to the floor in Tuesday’s game.
“You trust the players, trust the medical staff, and when they tell you someone can’t go, they can’t go,” Tom Thibodeau said. “Next guy get in there and get the job done. We know Taj is always ready, I’m pleased with the way Jericho is working, Mitch got out there and gave it what he had.”
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