Last season the Indiana Pacers needed depth at the point guard spot and to sign Ty Lawson they waived Chase Budinger. Phoenix rolled the dice on Budinger and signed him after he cleared waivers, but he struggled there as well shooting just 23.5 percent from three.
Now the Brooklyn Nets are going to bring him into training camp and give him a look, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.
The Nets have 15 guaranteed contracts already, the maximum number they can carry into the season. Budinger only makes the roster by beating out one of those guys so badly that the team is willing to waive said guaranteed player and eat his salary.
Budinger was once a quality NBA rotation player, but a lot of what he could do was based on his spectacular athleticism. A couple of knee surgeries robbed him of that bounce and he’s never been quite the same player.
This has been the rumor ever since reports came out that the Indiana Pacers would waive Chase Budinger to clear space for Ty Lawson to join the team for the playoffs.
Budinger is headed to Phoenix, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical at Yahoo Sports.
Budinger played his college ball at Arizona and has a comfort level in the state. With T.J. Warren out injured (not to mention Eric Bledsoe and Brandon Knight in the backcourt injured) the Suns could use all the help they can get. Over the course of a career beset by injuries, Budinger has averaged 8.1 points a game, showed off impressive athleticism, and shot 35.4 percent from three. But those numbers were way down in Indiana this season as he struggled to find a role with the team. He should have more freedom in Phoenix.
Because he was waived after March 1, he cannot join a team’s playoff roster. That is moot in Phoenix.
Most of the buyouts that were going to happen in the NBA already did — if the deal wasn’t complete by Monday midnight the waived player couldn’t join the playoff roster of another team.
But there is still a buyout happening — Chase Budinger will be bought out in Indy to make room for Ty Lawson, and Budinger is likely headed to Phoenix, according to reports. The two sides have agreed to a buyout, but it has not yet been executed because the Pacers are waiting for C.J. Miles (strained calf) to get healthy and provide depth before they let Budinger loose.
Sean Deveney of the Sporting News broke the story.
With the Pacers set to bring in guard Ty Lawson, who was waived by the Rockets two days ago, sources indicated to Sporting News that swingman Chase Budinger will be bought out before the start of the weekend, likely after Friday’s game….
Budinger went to the Pacers in a trade before the season, and played in 48 games, averaging 4.5 points. But when Paul George moved back from power forward to small forward, Budinger’s playing opportunity dried up. Indiana was unable to move him at the trading deadline, and because of injuries, could not complete a buyout.
Candace Buckner of the Indy Star confirms the story and has more details.
Maybe Budinger can get a little run in the Valley of the Sun and try to prove he deserves another NBA contract.
It’s been talked about all summer — Indiana going small and playing Paul George heavy minutes at the power forward spot. There’s a lot to like about that idea in an NBA going smaller.
Pacers coach Frank Vogel seems to like it — so much so he all but projected George as the starter at the four, when speaking to the fantastic Candice Buckner of the Indy Star.
“An idea on paper is to have a starting lineup of George Hill, Monta Ellis, C.J. Miles, Paul George and Ian Mahinmi,” said Vogel.
He thinks George is up to it.
I think this would be a smart move by the Pacers.
George, even coming off his horrific leg injury, is big and strong enough to defend the four against most of the guys in the East — especially in a league trending smaller (the West with guys like LaMarcus Aldridge, Blake Griffin and LaMarcus Aldridge. George can be a primary defender against most of the fours in the East, such as Carmelo Anthony or LeBron James (against the West, where Anthony Davis, Blake Griffi,k. Offensively George’s shooting would help create better spacing, and his ability to drive past slower-footed defenders. This would let the Pacers bring Chase Budinger, Jordan Hill, and Myles Turner off the bench.
My only question with that starting five is if the Pacers’ would have enough defense. But it would be worth some extended minutes to see if it works.