Adrian Wojnarowski: ‘Evan Turner Gives Pacers Some Longer-Term Options’
One-and-done doesn’t just apply to talented college freshmen who enter the NBA Draft. It also applies to the NBA trade deadline – the one yesterday, anyway.
Yes, more than one deal went down on Thursday, but only one – Indiana trading Danny Granger to Philadelphia for Evan Turner and Lavoy Allen – actually mattered.
“It was by far the most significant deal of the day because it involved a contender making a relatively (bold) move,” Yahoo! Sports columnist Adrian Wojnarowski said on The John Feinstein Show. “I think it’s a move for Indy that can help them in the short and long term. Granger hadn’t played well this year for them, and there was a sense of, ‘Do we keep waiting for him to be Danny Granger again and hope that happens in the playoffs?” or “Do we go by what we’ve seen all year?”
The Pacers went by what they’ve seen all year. Granger averaged just 8.3 points in 29 games for Indiana – this after averaging between 18.7 and 25.8 points from 2007-08 to 2011-12.
In exchange for Granger, Indiana gets Turner, a 6-7 all-around player, and Allen, a 6-9 forward with good touch around the basket.
“Turner gives them some longer-term options,” Wojnarowski said. “They weren’t going to re-sign Granger at this point, but Turner might give them a little leverage on Lance Stephenson, too. If Stephenson gets an offer from somebody else that’s (too much) for the Pacers, it gives them the option of keeping Turner long-term.”
Still, trading for Turner wasn’t necessarily a no-brainer.
“There’s some risk there,” Wojnarowski said. “He hasn’t played in very many important games in Philadelphia, and you’re asking him to (go to) Indiana – a team that has championship aspirations – and produce in the payoffs. There’s always some risk, but I do like the deal for Indiana.”
Philadelphia reportedly wanted a first-round pick for Turner, but the Pacers wouldn’t budge. The Sixers eventually dropped that request.
“I think Granger’s a guy that can be an asset for them going forward,” Wojnarowski said. “But the one thing Philly doesn’t want to do is win too many games here between now and the end of the season.
“I feel for Brett Brown and Philly,” Wojnarowski continued. “He knew what he was signing up for, but I’ll tell you what: The beatings they’ve taken in the last two weeks – 30-point games, 40-point games – to me, amplify the tremendous job he’s done this year. Because that should have been happening all season there – and it hasn’t.”
Overall, this year’s trade deadline came and went just as Wojnarowski envisioned – without a whole lot happening.
“All along, I just felt like there were no difference-makers that were really going to move,” Wojnarowski said. “It’s just hard to do deals now, and nobody wants to trade draft picks. You just have a culture sort of set up in the NBA with lots of sellers and very few buyers at any given team. Most people are trying to get back in rebuilding mode. Nobody wants to be stuck in that in-between place. You either want to be really good or really bad.”