At the trade deadline, flexibility was Joe Dumars' go-to word choice. He wanted his $20 million in cap space, along with an additional $17 million in soon-to-be-expiring deals, available to be put to use.
So far this offseason, the buzz has centered around mostly orthodox uses of the cap room. But Dumars made clear that he was interested in taking advantage of other teams' bloated payrolls. Indiana could be a great target.
Make note, there haven't been any roomers linking the two teams like the rest of the flurry of activity here at DBB. The fit just seems there, and Granger could be a much better answer at small forward than some of the other options being floated.
The Pistons need perimeter scoring, and Granger can provide it with his career 38% three-point shooting. His scoring efficiency was on the decline each of the four years leading up to his knee injury, but he'd be one of the most efficient scorers for the Pistons even without a return to his previous levels.
The biggest risk Granger brings is his price tag: $14 million. Without the Pacers taking on salary in return, he would be a significant bite into the Pistons' cap space. They would be left with barely enough to address other needs at point guard and depth.
However if the annual dollar figure being discussed about for free agency targets Josh Smith and Andre Iguodala is in the same ballpark, this makes little difference. More important is that the team would not be tied down to multi-year contracts on diminishing returns. On the contrary, they would be set up with increased cap flexibility boasting over $30 million in expiring contracts for next year's free agency class or to continue targeting bloated payrolls.
In addition to being the most affordable of the trio, Granger may also be the best player. And, being the only player who is a unquestioned small forward who can stretch the floor, he's certainly the best fit.
So, what would the Pacers want in return? Well, the team seems to have reached their ceiling for spending. West's deal puts them over $63 million and as soon as the agreement was reached, they pulled their offer to Tyler Hansbrough. The Pacers are a young team, and it's possible to envision them improving on their 49-win season. They're advertising Granger as available, according to Ken Berger. But for how much?
I have three brothers, all Pacers fans. I shot them a text if they'd go for Granger for Singler, straight up. They were receptive. What about you?