7 recent events that show Rockets need a wake-up call

Celebrities Attend Atlanta Hawks v Houston Rockets
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6. Pacers land Obi Toppin from Knicks for multiple second-round picks

This offseason, the Indiana Pacers landed 25-year-old forward Obi Toppin from the New York Knicks in exchange for two future second-round draft picks. The Knicks officially acquired the Pacers' 2028 and 2029 second-round picks for Toppin, who is in the final year of his rookie contract that pays him $6.8 million.

Toppin's value is tough to gauge, as he rarely received consistent playing time under Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau, which is why Toppin was reportedly frustrated and welcomed a change of scenery. In Toppin, the Pacers are landing an elite athlete and a gym rat- two traits that helped Toppin become a fan favorite in the Big Apple (sorry if you're reading this, Knicks fans).

For Toppin, he figures to land significantly more playing time in Indiana, as he will be a back-up power forward (at the very least) and could potentially even start. Not to mention that he'll be a natural fit alongside Tyrese Haliburton, who is easily the best point guard Toppin has played alongside in the NBA (surely the only pure point guard).

Haliburton will help unlock Toppin and he'll have the opportunity to get out and run, which coincides with his athleticism. The Knicks will receive the lesser of the 2028 second-round picks between the Indiana Pacers and Phoenix Suns, in addition to the least favorable of the 2029 second-round picks between the Indiana Pacers and the Washington Wizards.

The deal also helped the Knicks create enough cap space to land Donte DiVincenzo.

All in all, this was a quality pick-up for the Pacers, who land a player that was just selected eighth overall in the 2020 NBA Draft, not to mention one who also just averaged 17 points and 6.4 rebounds per 36 minutes in 2022-23.