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Is Tyler Hansbrough a Future All-Star for the Indiana Pacers?

CHICAGO, IL - APRIL 16: Tyler Hansbrough #50 of the Indiana Pacers drives around Taj Gibson #22 of the Chicago Bulls in Game One of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in the 2011 NBA Playoffs at the United Center on April 16, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. The Bulls defeated the Pacers 104-99. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and/or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images)
Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images
Mike B.Correspondent IDecember 8, 2011

The Indiana Pacers possess an abundance of cap space this offseason of which they can use to sign a big-name free agent.  

There's a lot of people out there who feel the team should acquire a new starting power forward and demote Tyler Hansbrough to the bench.

With that said, we've heard names like Nene and David West come up. However, bringing in a starter at the 4-spot just might turn out to be a waste of money for the Pacers in the long run.   

Why? Because Hansbrough could very well develop into an NBA All-Star here soon.

The former North Carolina superstar averaged only 11 points and 5.2 rebounds per game last season, which is not exactly anything to be excited about. But, but he did manage to put up 18 points and 8.6 rebounds per 36 minutes.

Hansbrough scored at least 20 points on 12 different occasions last season, including his career high of 30 against All-Star power forward Amar'e Stoudemire and the New York Knicks in March.

Speaking of March, that turned out to be a great month for Hansbrough, as he also put up 29 points twice: once against those same Knicks and another versus the Chicago Bulls, who of course finished with the league's top record.  

And appearing in his first career playoff series in April, Hansbrough looked pretty solid, dropping 22 points versus Chicago in Game 1 of the first round.

Hansbrough had five games last season in which he produced at least 20 points and 10 rebounds as well. He's no Kevin Love—at last not yet—but he's certainly shown the ability to put up some nice numbers at times.

Hansbrough is an extremely high-energy guy and possesses a tireless work ethic, which helped him emerge as a college basketball legend during his memorable career at UNC.

He has the skills to develop into that second reliable scoring option next to Danny Granger that the Pacers so desperately need.

Will "Psycho T" significantly improve his game over the years and become an All-Star in Indianapolis?

We'll just have to wait and see. 

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