The brutal news came just hours after Indiana Pacers guard Victor Oladipo went down with a knee injury against the Toronto Raptors. Oladipo was carried off the court on a stretcher Wednesday night, and the worst was immediately assumed. Early the next day, those concerns over the severity of his injury were confirmed.
The Pacers revealed that an MRI on Oladipo’s knee showed that the 26-year-old guard had suffered a ruptured quad tendon.
Victor Oladipo underwent an MRI Thursday that revealed he has a ruptured quad tendon in his right knee, sustained with 4:05 to play in the second quarter of Wednesday night’s game against Toronto. He will undergo surgery at a date to be determined and will be out for the season. Further updates will be provided as warranted.
With Oladipo out for the year, it means the Pacers will have to continue their strong start without a top offensive weapon. Through 36 games, Oladipo had posted averages of 18.8 points, 5.6 rebounds and 5.2 assists per game. Replacing him will prove to be a tall task, but the team has players on the current roster who will step in, and they could also evaluate potential trades.
Let’s take a look at the latest on the Pacers roster and starting lineup moving forward, which features Tyreke Evans stepping in for Oladipo.
Pacers Roster & Starting Lineup After Victor Oladipo Injury
|Center||Myles Turner||Kyle O’Quinn||TJ Leaf|
|Power Forward||Thaddeus Young||Domantas Sabonis||Alize Johnson|
|Small Forward||Bojan Bogdanovic||Doug McDermott|
|Shooting Guard||Tyreke Evans||Stephan Hicks||Davon Reed|
|Point Guard||Darren Collison||Aaron Holiday||Edmond Sumner|
Tyreke Evans Set to Start
Although Tyreke Evans’ minutes this season have been hit-or-miss, he’s set for an expanded workload and big opportunity. The 29-year-old guard will step in and take over the starting role in Oladipo’s absence, but his production through the 2018-19 NBA season has been mediocre at points.
Evans is currently averaging just 10.9 points per game on 39.3 percent shooting while seeing 20.5 minutes per game. It’s worth noting that the season prior when he played more than 30 minutes per with the Memphis Grizzlies, Evans averaged 19.4 points, 5.2 assists and 5.1 rebounds. He also shot 45.2 percent from the field that year and has shown flashes of that upside at various points this year.
Possible Extended Minutes for Cory Joseph & Aaron Holiday
While Evans is set to get the starting nod, there are going to be plenty of minutes to go around. In turn, this could open the door for both Cory Joseph and Aaron Holiday to take on larger workloads. Joseph currently averages 25.5 minutes per game along with 7.2 points and 3.8 assists. He’s an option to play shooting guard alongside Darren Collison at times, so envisioning him at both guard spots is a realistic thought.
Holiday is an interesting player who the Pacers seem to like. He’s averaging just 10.0 minutes and 5.1 points per game, which is largely due to the team’s depth at the guard position. Earlier this year, Holiday was tasked with taking on a bigger role and over four-straight games with 20-plus minutes, he scored in double figures in each.
How the Pacers opt to approach this situation will be worth monitoring, but there’s a lot which still needs to be sorted out even beyond Evans as the starter.