Indiana Pacers guard, Victor Oladipo wants to play for a contender.
He voiced it in an interview with rapper, Fat Joe.
“I’m all about winning,” he said.
“That’s what you’re defined as. I wanna be the greatest. I want to have my name amongst the greats.”
Oladipo is under contract for $21 million for the 2020-21 season and will be a free agent the following summer.
Prior to the NBA Bubble resume at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida, Oladipo was limited to 13 games this season after suffering a quad injury in January 2019. He struggled in his return and averaged averaging 13.8 points, 3.2 rebounds and 3.0 assists while shooting 39.1 percent from the floor.
On August 31, I noted via Twitter that the New York Knicks, Phoenix Suns, Toronto Raptors, Brooklyn Nets, Miami Heat and Minnesota Timberwolves all have interest in Oladipo and that the Timberwolves’ No. 1 overall pick in the 2020 NBA draft would not be in play.
On September 29, I learned that the Dallas Mavericks and Los Angeles Lakers are also intrigued by Oladipo who averagd 14.5 points, 3.9 rebounds and 2.9 assists per contest for the Pacers this season.
If winning is his goal, Oladipo and the Nets could make sense. He and Nets All-Star Kevin Durant have a pretty solid friendship. “I wanna be able to show my kids how great of a player I was,” Oladipo told Fat Joe in their interview.
“And in order to do that, you gotta show them some hardware…I want a lot of hardware.”
The Boston Celtics also make sense. As noted by The Athletic’s Jared Weiss this week, they do have assets like Gordon Hayward and draft picks to make it happen.
The Dallas Mavericks have a young roster with Luka Doncic and Kristaps Porzingis some added veteran leadership would be a bonus. “They got to get some tougher guys,” retired NBA vet, Antoine Walker told me on the Heavy Live With Scoop B Show in September.
“I do like their potential to be great because they got a little taste and I do like some of the pieces around them; I like Tim Hardaway Jr., I like Seth Curry; they have some of the better shooters around him so, they’ve already gotten over the threshold. Now it’s time to get a couple of defensive minded guys, some role players that can take a punch and do some of the dirty work and allow those guys to be great.”
Oladipo and the Lakers are an interesting intrigue but LA’s focus is currently on the NBA Finals where they hold a 1-0 lead on the Miami Heat.
Per SB Nation last fall: Assuming Anthony Davis re-signs and the four players that have player options — Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Avery Bradley, JaVale McGee and Rajon Rondo — opt in, the Lakers will have roughly $125 million in guaranteed salaries on their books next summer. If Davis doesn’t re-sign, Los Angeles will have just $5 million in dead salary on their books the following summer.