The Indiana Pacers been have both impressive and inconsistent during the absence of team captain Danny Granger. Granger, who has not been seen in a live game since the preseason, has missed all year with a knee injury. Granger has been seen shooting around before games with his teammates, but there is still no exact time table for his return. All season long there has been trade talk about about moving Granger when he gets healthy. That trade talk is both humorous and hollow.
Granger, a former All-Star and most improved player of the year, led this team in scoring every season since he entered the starting lineup. for several seasons, Granger was Indiana’s only bright spot. The knee injury he has dealt with this season is the only major injury he has suffered since his time with the Pacers. If and when he does return to the court this year, he will have to do so gingerly. The whole reason he had to be sidelined for so long, was because he returned to the court too quickly in the preseason. Even if Granger could come back from the bench in limited minutes, he would be more valuable to Indiana then the would be anywhere else.
Not only would the Pacers be shipping off a team captain due to injury, there would be very little that they could get in return. There is no skill set available for a player coming off of a major knee injury, so no one would give up much for that player. All the Pacers may get is an expiring contract, or possibly another player with injury issues.
The best plan for the Pacers is to keep their captain, and bring him back to form at a slow pace, in hopes that he will be ready to go at full speed in the playoffs. By then, the Pacers could be one of the most loaded and dangerous teams in the league. They are already pushing for another top seed in their division and conference. If it ain’t broke, you don’t need to fix it.