As the Indiana Pacers begin to regroup after being beaten in the Eastern Conference Finals by the Miami Heat again, the team knows something isn't quite right. They entered the season and immediately lit up the court; no team was hotter at the beginning of the year. Then, they started to fizzle some after the all-star break, regrouped, but then they had another meltdown in the playoffs before regrouping again to conclude a very strange season. Theirs was a testament to the long road of an NBA season, and the assorted trials teams face along the way.
So what's next for the group?
As a start to answering that question, The Pacers have announced they will be holding on to their head coach Frank Vogel, amid speculation that they would be replacing him with Mark Jackson before the beginning of next year.
Vogel and the coaching staff was not part of the issue this year, and neither was Roy Hibbert, contrary to what many disappointed fans say. However, you could see how improvement at point guard would not hurt this team.
According to the Basketball Insiders, one option would be to start talking with the Boston Celtics about Rajon Rondo. Indiana could work out a deal to include David West with a signed-and-traded Lance Stephenson as the basis for a Rondo deal, which would give the Celtics a talented young guard to add to their rebuilding effort, as well as a veteran Danny Ainge has always liked in David West. Other factors could be worked out to make the money work, obviously, but it's would not be the worst offer Boston is going to see, and would help the Pacers create change that might help them in the long run.
Rondo fits in well with Indiana's defensive identity and is a much better distributor than George Hill.
Because the Pacers lack a high pick in this years draft, a trade like this is really the only way they are going to make a big splash this year. Judging by their hunger to keep relevant in a league full of talent, this trade is not a far out.