Pacers make massive deals for Haliburton, Brown official
INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The Indiana Pacers wasted no time making some serious moves during NBA free agency. On Thursday, the blue and gold made two massive deals official.
The first: Bruce Brown. The former Denver Nuggets forward was the number one target for the Pacers front office. His versatility and defensive prowess earned him a two-year, $45 million contract.
“I came in the league five years ago and couldn’t imagine any of this happening to me,” Brown said. “So, I’m super grateful, super thankful. I’m a defender. That’s how I’ve made my name in this league, and they needed that. They need me to fit in and play that role, I think I’m perfect for that.”
“You talk about the fabric of Indiana and what this city is about, what this state is about. Hard work, those kinds of values. It’s just another reason why we’re so excited to have him here,” Head Coach Rick Carlisle said.
It took a team effort to get Brown to the Pacers. Point guard Tyrese Haliburton recruited him here. The two shared the stage Thursday as Haliburton signed a massive 5-year, $260 million-max contract extension.
“I love it here, man,” Haliburton said. “I am a Midwest kid through and through. I’ve said that many times before, but I’m just comfortable here. I’m a loyal person. Somebody who wants to be involved in building something and changing something. This is where I want to be moving forward, so I’m really excited we got that down.”
The contract is the highest payout in Pacers history. To Carlisle, Haliburton is worth every penny.
“He saw the possibilities here,” Carlisle said. “He believed in the guys on the roster, that were the young guys that had a chance to get better. He has changed the trajectory of this organization.”
“Sometimes in this business you get great players, and then sometimes in this business, you get great humans. Sometimes you get both, and we have both with Ty,” said Kevin Pritchard, the Pacers President of Basketball Operations. “It’s a great day for everybody. A great day for the organization.”
Keeping the All-Star and adding an NBA champion, the Pacers could be poised to make the playoffs next season.