Team President Larry Bird did not wait until the 2016 NBA Draft to make some noise for the Indiana Pacers. Wednesday afternoon, the Pacers acquired Atlanta Hawks’ point guard Jeff Teague in a three-team trade.
The teams involved in this trade deal with the Pacers are the Utah Jazz and obviously, the Hawks. While the Pacers will receive Teague, Indiana will ship veteran guard George Hill to the Jazz. To complete the trade, Utah will send the No. 12 pick of Thursday’s draft to the Hawks.
The trade was first reported by Yahoo Sports and The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Teague is a seven-year pro who has spend his entire career with the Hawks. He averaged 15.7 points, 5.9 assists and 2.7 rebounds in 79 games last season. He also made to the Eastern Conference All-star team in the 2014-15 season.
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Teague has a solid combination of scoring skills and playmaking abilities. He is an efficient shooter from the perimeter (40% from 3-point line last season) and finishes around the rim consistently.
At the same time, he is very good at setting his teammates up for open looks. He works well in pick-and-roll situations and can kick it out to open players when driving to the hoop.
Defensively, Teague is more than capable of duplicating what George Hill did for the Pacers. Teague is fast and athletic which allows him to stay in front of every guard in the NBA.
Coming into the offseason, the Indiana Pacers needed to bolster their roster somehow. Many people were clamoring for them to get a point guard. Well, Bird went out and brought an All-star point guard to Indiana.
On the flip side, the trade sends away point guard George who was a nice role player for the Pacers in five seasons with the team. He was a reliable player, but people often wanted to see more offensive production from him.
This trade was a big deal for the Indiana Pacers because it made them better both offensively and defensively. Now, Teague will join Pacers’ stars Paul George and Myles Turner to make a formidable three-headed monster.
It will be interesting to see how this trade will affect the Indiana Pacers’ draft strategy on June 23 because obviously, point guard is no longer a huge concern.