2021 Indiana Pacers Depth Chart
|Point Guard||Malcolm Brogdon||7||Aaron Holiday||3||T.J. McConnell||12|
|Shooting Guard||Caris Levert*||5||Jeremy Lamb||26||Edmond Sumner||5|
|Small Forward||Justin Holiday||7||Doug McDermott||20||TJ Warren*||12|
|Power Forward||Domantas Sabonis||11||JaKarr Sampson||14|
|Center||Myles Turner||33||Goga Bitadze||88|
The Indiana Pacers, by all accounts, had a very successful season in 2019 and one that nearly no one expected out of them. After losing Paul George heading into the season, the newly acquired Victor Oladipo was tasked with leading his new team to the playoffs. Oladipo did just that, helping the team go 48-34 and finish fifth in the Eastern Conference, but they fell short against the Cavaliers in the first round. With another season under the belts of Oladipo, Sabonis, and Turner, the Pacers are poised to continue growing their young core as they chase after the top of the Eastern Conference. The Pacers added depth at the point guard position through the draft with Aaron Holiday and also acquired both Tyreke Evans, Kyle O’Quinn and Doug McDermott in free agency. They did lose Lance Stephenson, who played a major role for them last season, but got all around better with experience and shooting to surround Oladipo with. Head coach Nate McMillan will look to further improve his team’s offense, as they ranked 11th in the NBA with a 109.5 offensive rating, and rebounding as they were one of the worst rebounding teams in the NBA last season while experimenting with lineups around Evans, Oladipo, and Turner.
Darren Collison returns to lead a deep point guard rotation after averaging 12.4 points and 5.3 assists for the Pacers last season. Collison led the league in three-point percentage, connecting on a staggering 46.8 percent of attempts, and had arguably the best season of his career. He doesn’t need to do much to improve on last year, as the Pacers need him to be a supporting actor and not a dominant ball-handler, but with depth at the position, Indiana is indeed lucky. Cory Joseph is an excellent backup guard that can handle the offense for Indiana when needed and Aaron Holiday has all the makings of an excellent NBA player. Victor Oladipo made his first All-Star game last season and averaged a career-high 23.1 points, 4.3 assists and 2.4 steals per game and leads one of the deepest offenses in the league. Behind Oladipo the Pacers have veteran swingman Tyreke Evans who comes in from Memphis where he averaged 19.4 points and 5.2 assists for the Grizzlies last season. Evans can operate as the primary ball handler at times, as well, giving the Pacers plenty of flexibility on offense.
Bojan Bogdanovic will continue to serve as the team’s primary small forward after appearing in 80 games for the Pacers last season. Bogdanovic showed his chops as a defender last season, helping the Pacers to the league’s 13 best defensive rating of 108.1 and will continue to be one of the team’s best options to hit a shot from the perimeter. When Bogdanovic is off the floor, newly acquired Doug McDermott will step in and help the Pacers with their perimeter shooting. McDermott will likely struggle on the defensive end of the floor but he is a career 40.3 percent three-point shooter, giving the Pacers bench some valuable offense. The Pacers appear to be incredibly deep at power forward this season with Thaddeus Young, Domantas Sabonis, T.J. Leaf and Kyle O’Quinn all being listed as power forwards but Sabonis and O’Quinn are potentially better suited to be the backup centers for Indiana which means Young and Leaf will need to step up for the team. Young had a solid season last year averaging 11.8 points and 6.3 rebounds for the Pacers but Leaf’s contributions to the team will be something to monitor through training camp. Leaf did not look great in Summer League so we may end up seeing Bogdanovic slide down to the “power forward” position with three guards in the backcourt a decent amount.
With Myles Turner leading the way at center, the Pacers are once again very deep at another position. Turner has been working hard in the gym this offseason and will look to help improve the Pacers rebounding situation but he has plenty of help behind him with Domantas Sabonis and Kyle O’Quinn. If depth at power forward becomes an issue for the Pacers, and it most certainly could happen, then we may end up seeing plenty of lineups with Sabonis and Turner on the court together which would lead to O’Quinn seeing a hefty number of minutes as the primary backup center. O’Quinn has been a per-36 monster in his career, averaging 14.3 points and 12.2 rebounds per 36 minutes, but he struggles to stay out of foul trouble. Keep a close eye on how Indiana handles their big man rotation in camp.