Sports, the Pacers and Ellis were gaining traction in free agency talks and Larry Bird is determined to get a deal done with the dynamic scoring shooting guard. Should the Pacers and Ellis agree to a deal – which could be for roughly $32 million over three years, per Wojnarowski – Stuckey would be too expensive.
The 29-year-old opted out of his $8.7 million option for next season with Dallas, becoming an unrestricted free agent on Wednesday.
Indiana’s main struggle over the last few years has been their offense.
Ellis has a 19.3 PPG career average, which is the highest ever for a player to never be an All Star.
He averaged 18.9 points and 4.1 assists in his second season with Dallas past year. Both Hill and Paul George can take the tougher defensive assignments on the perimeter, and Roy Hibbert can protect the rim behind the defensively challenged Ellis.
Ellis has the quickness to break down defenses and has the ability to create for others by penetrating. Bird and Frank Vogel have stressed the need to play smaller and increase tempo ever since the end of last season, and Ellis will surely help the Pacers accomplish both of those goals. Ellis turned down a larger offer from the Sacramento Kings, who offered him a four-year, $48 million deal, sources said.
With Ellis on board, would this change David West’s mind? Obviously there is some salary number where it makes no sense not to hire the man. But we’re looking at the reported figures, and there is a cost to throwing all the cap space at Monta as opposed to either (a) giving it all to someone else, or (b) spreading it out between two or more lesser players. He does not see Indiana as a contender, but maybe this move for Ellis could change his thought process.