Pacers Will Explore All Options With No. 18 Draft Pick

Pacers Will Explore All Options With No. 18 Draft Pick

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Pacers Will Explore All Options With No. 18 Draft Pick

Heading into this week’s NBA Draft, the Pacers are prepared to explore all options with the 18th overall pick.

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INDIANAPOLISIt’s an approach that Kevin Pritchard calls ‘open-minded’ when it comes to holding the 18th overall pick in this week’s NBA Draft.


The Pacers are used to drafting in this range.


In each of the last three years, they’ve had a first-round pick from 18-to-23:


-2018: Aaron Holiday (23rd overall)

-2017: T.J. Leaf (18th overall)

-2016: Caris LeVert (20th overall, traded to Nets for Thaddeus Young)


Given how the Pacers’ current structure is expected to look after free agency, cap space is going to be tighter moving forward.


That only adds to the importance of hitting on this 18th overall pick, either by the player, or via trade.


Pritchard does not want people to forget that the Pacers have options with this draft pick.


“This year I feel good that we are going to get a player who is a good prospect, but we are going to be open-minded,” Pritchard says. “I would not be surprised if that pick isn’t the pick we make. We either move down, we move up, we trade the pick. People feel that this will be a pretty good draft in that area.”


If you want hope that this 18th overall pick can come in and produce on a playoff team next season, don’t take a look at last year’s first-round class. It’s difficult to find more than one first-round rookie that went on to contribute in the rotation for playoff teams.


Still, that doesn’t mean the Pacers can afford to strike out on how they end up using this 18th overall pick.


Mock Drafts have former thought to be locks for the lottery in Bol Bol (Oregon) and Romeo Langford (Indiana) falling into the teens.


If one of them were to fall to 18, would either be attractive enough for the Pacers?


Or does Pritchard like the idea of doing an uneven trade, similar to what the Pacers accomplished in 2016 in acquiring Thaddeus Young.


“I love the draft,” Pritchard says. “I can’t wait for it. We are going to be very aggressive with that pick.”


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