Indiana Pacers: Why TJ McConnell’s contract may not age well
Indiana Pacers, TJ McConnell – Credit: Nick Turchiaro-USA TODAY Sports
With the Indiana Pacers entering the 2021-22 NBA season with a firm win-now mentality, the board has made a point of retaining point guard TJ McConnell’s services in the off-season, reducing the seven-year veteran to a 4-year, $35 title. deal of millions after registering a year of career in the previous campaign.
Considered one of the league’s best bench operators as a point guard, rehiring McConnell made perfect sense. Although the length of her contract was a little surprising, her annual salary was well within her perceived market value, especially with her multifaceted skill set at both ends.
However, what has been happening to the team lately could make their contract more difficult to digest in the future.
With a shift in direction, the Indiana Pacers could flinch from TJ McConnell’s contract
Following news that the Indiana Pacers were moving towards a more adequate rebuild, reports surfaced of TJ McConnell’s possible loss for the season due to hand surgery to correct a torn ligament in his right wrist, which prevented him from fight since the game against Washington. See the article : Indiana.
Injury Update: TJ McConnell underwent successful surgery to repair a torn ligament in his right wrist this morning.
He will remain in a cast for 10 to 12 weeks before the medical team will assess his status and estimate a time for his return.https: //t.co/2n4NidjWOs
– Indiana Pacers (@Pacers) December 7, 2021
Now, the Pacers leadership is not only less committed to winning at its current core, but will now be in limbo with one of its victorious players at McConnell. While the heady general is a reserve of quality who must pursue a few suitors, his contract could cripple them all, assuming Indiana really does go full blast starting from scratch.
In a rebuild, McConnell makes little sense. Not only is their skill set much more supportive of basketball now, but their presence alone will require significant time on the court, which is counterproductive to the development of young players. If the board starts commercial dominoes this season, TJM will be an obvious sequel, but his injury could make it much more difficult than expected.
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The problem is that many teams don’t have the staff like Indy to constantly let McConnell be the primary ball handler, a requirement since the stealth guard is insignificant in three-point terrain. Despite his clear assertiveness with the ball as a playmaker and defender, the squad, although the second unit, must be adapted to their strengths, a high requirement to facilitate a player who is, at best, the sixth player.
Plus, his four-year, $35 million contract, while reasonable, is closer to paying more than a bargain, salary, and length considered. Finding a suitor for McConnell, who basically can only play one position, can be a daunting task. As the Pacers approach a rebuild, the need to move it – if they can – must be met at the earliest opportunity.
Make no mistake – I love TJ McConnell. He is a culture amplifier who seems to be as good a person as a basketball player. However, with the Indiana Pacers looking ready to make an unusual move, their contract, backed by a previous track record of winning now, may not age well in the future.