Danny Granger was a huge question mark coming into the season. He'd missed almost the entirety of the past two seasons with knee injuries. If he was healthy, he could be a major boon to Indiana's scoring depth, something they badly needed. If not, he was a $14 million expiring contract to be used on the trade market. Everone has their own favorite Danny Granger trade idea. Mine involves former Indiana University star Eric Gordon going to Indy in exchange for Granger, giving the Pacers a scorer who can create his own shot (something the Pacers badly needed last year) and giving the Pelicans another talented frontcourt scorer and cap relief. It hasn't been so much a question of if Granger would be traded, but where. But Pacers blog 8 Points 9 Seconds has a great piece breaking down why that's not going to happen. It starts with a discussion of a possible trade involving Jamal Crawford from the Clippers, and uses it as an example of why it won't happen. There's one problem with the trade, though: It puts the Clippers around 7.3 million over the luxury tax and they'd need to add a player(s) earning that much this season to the trade. But just for the heck of it let's say that trade works out for both teams. The Pacers have still got a big problem. Lance Stephenson's contract runs out this offseason and, as of now, the Pacers will be paying around $65 million in total payroll for the 2014-15 season, according to Shamsports. The estimated luxury tax threshold next season is $75 million. Now add in Jamal Crawford's $5 million salary for next year to the Pacers' payroll and that will put them at around $70 million, leaving them only around $5 million under the luxury tax. That's not going to be anywhere near enough to sign Lance next year — and with the way Lance has been playing recently, even being $10 million under the tax line will be cutting it close.
Why Danny Granger is unlikely to be traded
CBS Sports | Jan 24