Victor Oladipo, the star on which the hopes of the Indiana Pacers complete in the face of the outcome of their season, suffered a chilling injury that automatically moved his teammates, rivals, and fans. Paul George, for example, tweeted: “We pray for VO,” alluding to whoever was the flip side of the Indiana Pacers-Oklahoma City Thunder trade.
Oladipo, 28, is not expected to entertain a delay this offseason due to the restrictions of the collective trading agreement relative to what Indiana can offer. He has stated publicly and privately that he needs to play for a squad aspiring to compete for a championship. Oladipo says that he has been excited to play under new head coach Nate Bjorkgren and the two have had positive dialogue in recent weeks.
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Bob Kravitz, Indiana columnist: After the Paul George fiasco a few years back, this means everything to the Pacers. Fans here will be cautious; Oladipo identifies as changing his mind (see, The Bubble), so we’ll always wonder if he’ll remain true to his word. For now, though, Oladipo, who went from hero to zero in almost no time, is a hero once again. The guy who used to point to the floor and say, “My city!” has finally, mercifully acknowledged that he wants to be an Indiana Pacer for the long term. Surprising, yes. Shocking would be a better word.
Kravitz: There’s no question Oladipo can return to form and be the Pacers’ top player, but he won’t need to be alpha on this team. It is a good, deep team, and players like Malcolm Brogdon, T.J. Warren, and Domantas Sabonis have shown they can carry the load when necessary. We don’t know how Oladipo will recover from his injury; he wasn’t nearly the same when he returned late last season, but he’s got the skill and the work ethic to return to his old self — or at least close.
Zach Harper, NBA staff writer: I wouldn’t build around Oladipo anymore. He says he’s loyal, and he’s supposed to say that publicly. There have been increasingly louder and louder whispers around the league that he wants out, and he wants a big contract regardless. With his injury history and those whispers, I’d cut bait and move him for assets and flexibility moving forward. You have good young pieces, and you don’t need to tie yourself to Oladipo on huge money.
James Harden trades after the Houston Rockets to the Brooklyn Webs. That’s the front page of the massive deal that shook up multiple contenders in the NBA earlier this week. But the Indiana Pacers also got involved in the shuffle; they also sent away a former All-NBA guard in a related deal.
The Pacers dealt two-time All-Star Victor Oladipo to Houston in the complicated pair of trades that involved multiple draft ranges and over a half-dozen players. In exchange, Indiana received skilled wing Caris LeVert from Brooklyn and two future second-round draft picks.
It’s a franchise-changing deal for the Pacers. And to know why the team made this trade for LeVert, one has to go back a few years in time. They learned Oladipo, along with Domantas Sabonis, back in 2017 when the organization dealt away Paul George. That package was silent as an underwhelming reappearance for George, a three-time All-NBA player. But things changed quickly.
Return to the court for the fans of Indianapolis and the NBA. Not all comebacks are perfect, but some are meaningful and motivating, like that of Victor Oladipo. After more than a year of absence, he helped the Indiana Pacers to a 115-106 overtime win over the Chicago Bulls in a long-awaited game.
The last time Victor Oladipo was on a basketball court was on January 23, 2019, at Bankers Life Fieldhouse against the Toronto Raptors. As he chased after Paskal Siakam, he collapsed on the floor. Something was not right, and he grabbed his knee, screaming in pain. He was silent this time.
The Indiana Pacers lost star guard Victor Oladipo to a severe right knee injury in the second quarter of Wednesday night’s game against the Toronto Raptors. This season, the sixth-year NBA player averaged 19.2 points per game, down from 2017-18, when he averaged 23.1 due to injuries. Since last December 30, he had already felt discomfort in his knee. In the Detroit game that day, he limped off after colliding with a Pistons player, but he didn’t go any further. Oladipo’s leg twisted as he fell to the ground as he looked to hinder or block the Raptors’ Pascal Siakam.
The team has already announced that Oladipo will undergo an MRI next Monday. Team trainers placed a towel over Oladipo’s leg as players from both teams surrounded the Indiana star. The expression he has is eloquent with what happened. As he decided to get off the court on a stretcher, he received a standing ovation from fans at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Oladipo made his first All-Star Game selection last season after being acquired in a trade for Paul George from the Oklahoma City Thunder. Through social networks, the reactions did not wait. Stars like LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers, Devin Booker of Phoenix, and Bradley Beal of Washington sent good vibes.
Indiana will receive Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield, and Tristan Thompson for the former All-Star forward. The Indiana Pacers have traded Domantas Sabonis to the Sacramento Kings in return for young guard Tyrese Haliburton as part of the 6-player deal that includes Buddy Hield.
2023 second-round pick
Oladipo will look for a new leap in quality that will lead Indiana to fight in an Eastern Conference that opened after LeBron’s departure. His enormous production allowed him, as an extra, to play his first All-Star Game. As a preview, we leave a compact with his ten best actions of him during the last year.
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