Tuesday, November 5th, 2013 at 10:20 am  |  10 responses

Lance Stephenson Plans to Stay With the Indiana Pacers

Once he hits the free agent market next summer, Lance Stephenson will be a hot commodity, and could command more money than the Pacers are willing to pay. Stephenson says he’s not going anywhere. From the team website: “Through three games, Stephenson is averaging 19 points while shooting nearly 60 percent from the field and 64 percent from the three-point line, has just five turnovers, and has defended aggressively. Those kind of players tend to get paid in the NBA, and Stephenson will. For him to stay with the Pacers, it seems Stephenson’s self-proclaimed ‘daddy,’ Larry Bird, will have to sacrifice someone or something to bring back his prized draft pick of 2010. But it also seems both parties are willing to make compromises. Their marriage is too fresh and too adoring for it not to continue beyond four years. ‘I don’t think about that,’ Stephenson said after matching his regular season career high with 22 points while hitting a career-high five three-pointers in seven attempts. ‘It’s a long season, I’m not thinking nothing about contracts. I’m going to stay with the Pacers, so I’m not even thinking about the contract.’ Going to stay? Does that mean he would turn down a larger offer to re-sign? ‘I’m staying with the Pacers,’ he said. [...] The other question looming over Stephenson is what happens if and when (Danny) Granger returns. Coach Frank Vogel had planned for Granger to start in place of Stephenson if Granger recaptured his level of play prior to his knee issues of last season. Should Granger – who is out with a strained calf muscle – return to that level, would it really make sense to take Stephenson out of the starting lineup? He reiterated his stance following Saturday’s game. ‘Either way,’ he said. ‘If I come off the bench, it doesn’t matter. When we all play together we play great, so it doesn’t matter if I start or come off the bench.’”

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  • http://slamonline.com/ Ben Osborne

    This dude is playing so well.

  • spit hot fiyah

    is this his 4th year? if so he will be unrestricted. if he continues to develop he might have to break his word if some team offers him much more than the pacers will

  • Jeremy de Sa

    I love how being part or a winning culture can completely change a person.. the Pacers are a scary team.

  • anon

    Born Ready is doing well this year. It’s great to see him grow and mature with the Pacers. I remember when he was glued to the pine, now he’s a valuable starter. Kudos to Bird, the Pacers and especially Lance himself for making that long commitment to improving and learning together.

  • Franics

    Everybody’s got plans ’til there ain’t enough zeroes on the cheque…

  • Dfrance

    I don’t think Larry Bird and the Pacers get enough credit for sticking with Lance. When he was having his troubles it would have so easy to banish him to a D League team which might have started a negative downward spiral for Lance career wise.

    But they kept him on the team, brought him along slowly and now its paying off for everyone involved.

  • Caboose

    Honestly, the D-League can really be more of a death knell for careers than the support they advertise. Terrence Williams comes to mind.

  • LakeShow

    Sounds like Lance is doing the right thing and paying them back for their support.

  • Dfrance

    It can be demoralizing, especially for guys that were stars in college and actually got drafted.

  • Youngindy21

    Good to see that Lance wants to stay in Indy. He and Paul George can win multiple championships together if they continue to work hard.