As initially reported Friday evening, the Indiana Pacers and Phoenix Suns have consummated a trade that will send forward Luis Scola to Indianapolis.
The Pacers' official website reported the completed terms of the deal, as Gerald Green, Miles Plumlee and a future first-round pick will be headed to Phoenix. There is no word on the details of the first-round selection at this time, though Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski notes that it carries some level of protection:
The Suns confirmed that the pick only carries lottery protection, via their official Twitter feed:
Barring an unforeseen change in circumstance, it's likely the Pacers' first-round pick next season will be headed to the Suns.
Wojnarowski first reported Friday evening that Indiana and Phoenix were drawing close to a deal for Scola and that the sides had been working on the deal for weeks. The 33-year-old Argentine forward spent last season with the Suns after being claimed off of amnesty waivers from the Houston Rockets. He scored 12.8 points and grabbed 6.6 rebounds per game while playing in all 82 games.
"I’m very, very excited to play for the Pacers," said Scola, via the press release. “They are one of the top three teams in the NBA with a good shot to win a championship. I think it’s a great team and this is a great opportunity. I can’t wait.”
Scola spent his first five seasons in Houston, carving out a niche as one of the league's most versatile big men. An excellent mid-range shooter, he knocked down 45.6 percent of his shots from that area on the floor and should aid an Indiana team in need of spacing help.
For his career, Scola has averaged 14.2 points and 7.5 rebounds per game. He was a two-time Spanish League MVP before coming over to the Rockets prior to the 2007-08 season.
Pacers President of Basketball Operations Larry Bird, who returned to the organization this offseason, noted they will use Scola off the bench, likely as David West's primary backup.
"Luis will be a very important asset to our team and to our bench,” he said. “He has NBA experience, international experience and is the type of player that will fit in nicely on our roster."
Bird also went out of his way to compliment Green and Plumlee, both major acquisitions last summer who could not find consistent playing time in Frank Vogel's rotation.
"I want to thank Gerald and Miles for their contributions," Bird said. "They had tough years last season, but worked hard, never complained and contributed to the great chemistry our team had. I think Gerald and Miles will be solid additions in Phoenix and we wish them well."
Green parlayed an excellent stretch run with the New Jersey Nets in 2011-12 into a three-year, $10.5 million contract with Indiana last July.
Failing to continue that momentum, the 27-year-old Green averaged just seven points and 2.4 rebounds per game last season. He shot 36.6 percent from the field and was unable to pick up the intricacies of Vogel's defensive scheme, finding himself on the bench for almost the entirety of the Pacers' playoff run.
Indiana was defeated by the Miami Heat in a seven-game Eastern Conference Finals series. Green appeared in just two games, tallying 14 total minutes. His move to Phoenix will reunite him with Ryan McDonough, the new Suns general manager who was with the Boston Celtics when they drafted Green in 2005.
Plumlee was the Pacers' first-round pick in 2012 (No. 26 overall) and found himself in a similarly untenable situation. The former Duke standout appeared in just 14 regular-season games for Indiana, averaging 0.9 points and 1.6 rebounds in 3.9 minutes a night. He spent multiple assignments with the Fort Wayne Mad Ants, the Pacers' D-League affiliate.
The Pacers did not play Plumlee once during the postseason.
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