Even with the NBA Finals dominating the basketball conversation, trade rumors are flying all over the place. And there's one proposal that may not actually happen but is worth your time just in case it gets lost in discussion.
ESPN.com's Marc Stein and Ramona Shelburne reported Sunday that the Clippers and Pacers had been in preliminary talks of trading Eric Bledsoe for Danny Granger. The Clippers, determined to move Bledsoe in hopes of keeping free agent point guard Chris Paul, are chopping it up with the Magic, too. (Arron Afflalo is the reported target in Orlando.)
The Pacers want to keep Granger; if he's healthy, they're a real threat to Miami in the East, next season.
But they might want to consider Bledsoe for the rising young point guard he is in this league. Right now, George Hill is running the 1, and he was clearly the weakest link when the Pacers fell to Miami in the Eastern Conference Finals.
It's not that Eric Bledsoe gets them over the hump, necessarily. He just seems like the solution to a problem. Hill is a safe, efficient point guard until it's time to take efficient to another level. Bledsoe has been considered, for a couple of years now, to be a hidden gem.
A perimeter game starring Paul George and Bledsoe with Roy Hibbert at center would be a good look toward the future. Granger and Hill are not that.
Sources say that the Clippers, meanwhile, have already engaged the Orlando Magic and Indiana Pacers in separate trade discussions headlined by Bledsoe, with Orlando’s Arron Afflalo and Indiana’s Danny Granger as the respective trade targets. Indiana, according to sources, is leaning at present toward keeping Granger for the final season of his contract in hopes that the former All-Star swingman’s return from knee surgery can help the Pacers close the gap on Miami in the East, but L.A. has been operating for months under the premise that Bledsoe, once Paul re-signs, will be dealt before becoming a restricted free agent in July 2014.
This looks like the deal Indiana is sleeping on.