The Indiana Pacers just officially acquired Caris LeVert on Saturday as part of the blockbuster trade involving superstar James Harden, but unfortunately, LeVert won’t debut with his new team for the foreseeable future.
LeVert has a small mass on his kidney and will be out of action indefinitely.
MRI reveals mass on Caris LeVert’s left kidney
Shams Charania of The Athletic reported on LeVert’s diagnosis, which came right on the heels of the Pacers’ announcement that the 26-year-old had just joined the team.
When Indiana posted the news of LeVert’s arrival, there was no mention of his medical red flag. Pacers president Kevin Pritchard spoke glowingly of the former Brooklyn Nets standout:
“Caris is a high-quality person who will fit in with what we as an organization are doing, on and off the floor,” said Pritchard. “He’s a versatile young talent who we think will be a great fit with the direction our team is taking. He can play multiple positions and affect the game at both ends of the floor.”
It’s obvious Indiana has big plans for LeVert down the road. Now, of course, the situation has changed, as the chief concern is LeVert’s health and full recovery.
How Caris LeVert fits into Indiana Pacers future
Still under contract for the next two seasons after this one, LeVert is a relative bargain, and is an ideal replacement for Pacers All-Star guard Victor Oladipo, who clearly wanted out of Indiana and was struggling to consistently find his stride following a long injury layoff.
LeVert signed his current three-year, $52 million deal, bearing in mind that he’d be making room for the max contracts of Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant in Brooklyn. Whenever he returns to the court and makes his Pacers debut, he’ll indubitably bolster the team’s hopes of going deep in the playoffs in the East.
Malcolm Brogdon is already in place as Indiana’s starting point guard, yet LeVert has shown he can be a playmaker and a willing passer in addition to a dynamic scorer who’s put up over 18 points a night over his past 57 games. He averaged six assists per night in 12 contests with the Nets this season, and adds to an already versatile rotation of wing players on the Pacers roster.
With Myles Turner and Domantas Sabonis patrolling the frontcourt, it’ll be really exciting to see how Indiana fares once LeVert returns. However, again, the focus should be on his recovery for the time being.