Pascal Siakam trade: Pacers finalizing deal to acquire All-Star forward from Raptors, per report

The Toronto Raptors and Indiana Pacers are finalizing a deal that will send two-time All-Star Pascal Siakam to Indiana, per ESPN. The Raptors will reportedly receive three first-round picks as well as Bruce Brown and Jordan Nwora in the blockbuster deal that comes three weeks ahead of the Feb. 8 NBA trade deadline. The Pelicans are also involved in the trade, sending Kira Lewis Jr. to Toronto.

Siakam, an impending free agent, is “expected” to work out a long-term deal this summer to stay in Indiana, ESPN adds.

“I’m excited that Pascal is getting a first-class opportunity with the Pacers, being paired with Tyrese [Haliburton] and Myles [Turner] and being coached by a great coach in Rick Carlisle. His future there looks bright there,” Siakam’s agent Todd Ramasar told Andscape.

Several other teams reportedly explored acquiring Siakam, including the Golden State Warriors and Dallas Mavericks. The Raptors were seemingly at one point involved in talks with the Sacramento Kings, but those talks eventually fizzled. Sacramento was reportedly been unwilling to include second-year forward Keegan Murray in any deal for Siakam. Siakam, with his summer date with free agency, had unusual leverage in these trade talks. He could scare off teams he was not interested in by refusing to negotiate an extension.

Indiana, now 23-17 and holding the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference, was well-positioned to make the significant addition. Not only did the Pacers — who average an NBA-best 125.6 points per game — own all of their own first-round picks as well as another 2024 first-rounder from the Thunder, but they are positioned to create max cap space this offseason as well. That gave them a bit of leverage against the Raptors in these negotiations.

Siakam, 29, is averaging 22.2 points, 6.3 rebounds and 4.9 assists per game this season. This is his eighth season in the NBA, all of which came with the Raptors, who drafted him 27th overall in 2016. Siakam has made two All-Star teams, two All-NBA teams and helped Toronto win its first NBA title in 2019.

The Raptors already made a big trade this season by sending OG Anunoby to the New York Knicks in a deal that landed them RJ Barrett and Immanuel Quickley. Barrett and Quickley have fit in seamlessly in Toronto, and now, the Raptors dealt another key veteran to continue their push to make the roster younger around centerpiece forward Scottie Barnes.

Indiana is not known to be especially aggressive in pursuing veteran talent, but the emergence of Tyrese Haliburton as a legitimate MVP candidate has changed their roster-building calculus. The right upgrades could turn the Pacers into championship contenders in the near future.

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