The Indiana Pacers are stacked from top to bottom with very few holes, if any, in their team. But they still have two available roster spots, and one of those spots should be used to sign free agent Jason Collins.
In a time where several teams are trying to perfect their “small-ball” style, the Pacers are going the opposite route; they are building a monstrous team that revolves around 6-foot-8 Paul George and 7-foot-2 Roy Hibbert. The smallest guys on the team are point guards George Hill and C.J. Watson who stand at 6-foot-2.
Collins would fit nicely in the Pacers “big men” style, as he stands 7-foot-0; and you can never have too many serviceable seven-footers. Collins isn’t going to be a big time scorer (he won’t score much at all really), a big time rebounder, or a big time shot blocker. During his best season, 2004-2005, he averaged 6.4 points, 6.1 rebounds, and 0.9 blocks; nothing special at all. He is better known for his defense, especially when it comes to defending Dwight Howard, which the Pacers can always use more of.
The Detroit Pistons, another team that is building around their big men, brought Collins in recently for a workout, but a contract never appeared and the Pistons decided to pass on him. It’s not unusual to see aging players like Collins get passed over during the initial weeks of free agency. In the past two season, Collins hasn’t been signed until mid-August/early September.
Mid-August has now passed and September is a little over a week away, and most NBA teams have their 12-man roster set, but they can sign up to 15 players. The Pacers used those last couple spots to sign Ben Hansbrough and Sam Young last season, and will likely wait to use one or both of their remaining spots on 10-day contracts throughout the season. However, Collins will not likely be available once the season begins, which is why they need to snatch him up now.
The Pacers need to act now if they want to obtain Collins’ services for the upcoming season. You never know when he will be needed, especially when their big men get in foul trouble, and having an extra 7-foot body is only beneficial to helping them win a championship this season.