Victor Oladipo and the Indiana Pacers proved a point to the NBA this season. They proved that they are going to be a team to be reckoned with for quite some time. Indiana finished the regular season with a 48-34 record, despite the national media not giving them a chance to make the playoffs after trading Paul George in the offseason.
Not only did the Pacers put together a great regular season, but they also pushed LeBron James and the Cleveland Cavaliers to a Game 7 in the first round of the NBA Playoffs. Unfortunately, the Pacers ended up losing to the Cavaliers and were sent into the offseason with high hopes.
For the first time in a long time, the Pacers could be viewed as an attractive landing spot for free agents this offseason. Playing alongside Oladipo and the young Pacers could be intriguing for quite a few free agents.
According to HoopsHype, the Pacers could be one of the top landing spots for Julius Randle this offseason.
Last season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Randle showed why he is going to be a hot topic this offseason. He averaged 16.1 points per game to go along with 8.0 rebounds and 2.6 assists. Randle became a much better defender throughout the season and received high praise from Luke Walton for his efforts on that side of the court.
At just 23 years of age, Randle would fit well with the Pacers long-term. They are young and might be in the market for a scrappy power forward.
Thaddeus Young was the Pacers’ starting power forward last season. He has an opt-out clause in his contract and he is expected to exercise that option and test free agency. Randle would be a much younger option for the Pacers and he brings a very similar but more physical game to the table.
Randle is also the same type of player as Young as far as how he plays on the offensive end of the court. He does not need the basketball to be successful. Indiana could benefit from his rebounding ability, but they could also throw the ball to him in the post and let him go to work.
Kevin Pritchard has done an amazing job of building this Pacers team while having to trade George. It is never easy to move on from a franchise player, but Indiana made it look easy.
Bringing in a piece like Randle in free agency might be the move that takes them over the top. Indiana was a serious threat in the Eastern Conference this season, but with Randle, they could make some noise in the playoffs next year.