The Indiana Pacers had a great off-season, and filled many of the issues that they had last year with new players. Their biggest move of the off-season was a player who was already on the roster, and has been the face of their franchise in the past. Danny Granger has been rehabbing his troublesome knee this entire off-season, and is very close to a full recovery. Adding a former All-Star and a legitimate scorer to last years team is going to be the biggest addition of the off-season for the Pacers.
Granger has averaged 18.1 points and 5.2 rebounds per game over the course of his NBA career. The Pacers haven’t decided how they are going to use Granger yet. They could start him, or they could bring him off the bench as the scoring threat that they needed last season. Either way that they decide to use him, if he is able to remain healthy, he will be a huge upgrade to what they had last year.
There was an interview done with Granger just the other day, and he was obviously excited for the upcoming season. He was very happy with the off-season acquisitions that Pacers’ GM Larry Bird made, and thinks that the Pacers are going to have a legitimate shot at winning their first NBA championship.
Some may ask the question of what Granger has left coming off of his knee injury that kept him out of the majority of last season. He was able to come back and play in five games, but averaged just 5.4 points and 1.8 rebounds. There are still question marks about just how healthy he is, and whether or not he’ll be back to 100% to start the season, but Granger has made it clear that he is playing hard on his knee and that it feels pretty good. The Pacers won’t rush Granger back, you can count on that. One comment that brings hope to the team, was him saying that he plans to participate in preseason action.
Assuming that Granger is able to make a full comeback, he’ll bring great scoring and shooting to the table. He’s a great veteran presence, and an emotional leader on the floor as well. His outside shooting will be a huge plus for the Pacers as well, who struggled finding consistent shooting from the perimeter last year. With two of the best big men in the NBA in Roy Hibbert and David West, adding a guy like Granger to help stretch the floor would certainly be a welcomed addition. Even off the bench the Pacers have a great post presence in Luis Scola that Granger would help get good looks if he were to come off the bench.
Overall, Danny Granger is going to be a huge part of what the Pacers are going to do this season. There are certainly question marks with him, but the fact of the matter is that he is one heck of a player when healthy. It will definitely be interesting to see if they decide to start him or bring him off the bench, but either way you can expect a good year from Granger.