Indiana Pacers Pose Biggest Eastern Conference Threat to Cleveland

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TORONTO, CANADA - APRIL 16: Paul George #13 of the Indiana Pacers looks on against the Toronto Raptors in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs on April 16, 2016 at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement. (Photo by Tom Szczerbowski/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Paul George

by Robby Stratokos, Last Word on Pro Basketball

Coming off of an NBA title, the Cleveland Cavaliers are the team to beat in the Eastern Conference, and it has been assumed that LeBron James, Kyrie Irving, and company will walk their way right back to the NBA Finals. However, the East has become very interesting. The Boston Celtics signed All-Star big man Al Horford, the Atlanta Hawks replaced Horford with Dwight Howard, the New York Knicks brought in Joakim Noah and Derrick Rose, and the Chicago Bulls signed Rajon Rondo and Dwyane Wade. However, no team in the conference has had a better off-season than the Indiana Pacers, who now pose the biggest Eastern Conference threat to the Cavs.

Indiana Pacers Pose Biggest Eastern Conference Threat to Cleveland

The League’s Most Underrated Point Guard

The Pacers got busy on the phones shortly after the NBA Finals, making two very under-the-radar trades. They made a three team deal with the Atlanta Hawks and Utah Jazz to acquire point guard Jeff Teague. Teague is one of the most explosive point guards in the NBA and is a former All-Star. He also comes in on only an $8 million salary for one year, so if it doesn’t work out with him in Indiana, the Pacers can part ways with him after this season. However, that shouldn’t be the case, as Teague has a lot to play for. He is in a contract year, in which he needs to play well to prove that last year was just an off year. That would allow him to position himself for a big-time contract that he feels he deserves, and he may have found just the team with which to do that. The Pacers have been in need of a scoring point guard for a long time, and while George Hill is a great defender, he just wasn’t the scoring option they need; Teague is.

 

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