This has been in the grapevine for a week and finally got confirmation today: Aaron Brooks has signed with the Indiana Pacers for 1 year at $2.5m.
The 31-year-old point guard, who averaged 7.1 points in 16.1 minutes (over 69 games) last season, is expected to back up new acquisition Jeff Teague at the point, relegating Joe Young to the third string.
Brooks is a scorer and not a natural playmaker, but the Pacers do need players who have speed and can put the ball on the floor. His best days seem to be behind him, though at 2.5m for one year that is fantastic value considering the Pacers still had around 9m in cap space. When the deal was first announced I feared that Brooks would be taking up most of that space, so this is great news.
What it does mean is that the Pacers will have to trim someone from the roster as they now have 16 players. The two guys with non-guaranteed contracts are Glenn Robinson III and Shayne Whittington, and it looks like the Pacers will finally have to let Whittington go after several years of shuttling between the D-League and the end of the Pacers bench.
If that is the case, next season’s depth chart will look like this (unless there are further transactions):
PG: Jeff Teague / Aaron Brooks / Joe Young
SG: Monta Ellis / Rodney Stuckey
SF: Paul George / CJ Miles / Glenn Robinson III / Georges Niang
PF: Thaddeus Young / Lavoy Allen / Jeremy Evans
C: Myles Turner / Al Jefferson / Rakeem Christmas
Note: Paul George and Myles Turner are both training with Team USA right now in preparation for the Olympics.