Edmond Sumner suffered a season-ending Achilles injury earlier this month, while Aaron Holiday was traded to the Washington Wizards in August. To make matters worse, TJ Warren has been sidelined indefinitely with a foot injury. The Pacers will need a backup player or two to compete next season.
Matthews and Stephenson have both suited up for the Indiana Pacers before. Matthews played 23 games for the franchise in the 2018-19 season, averaging 10.9 points per game. Meanwhile, Stephenson played 298 games across six different seasons, averaging 9.1 points per game.
NBA Rumors: Will Wesley Matthews or Lance Stephenson be good additions for the Indiana Pacers?
Wesley Matthews and Lance Stephenson will bring plenty of experience with them to the Indiana Pacers, who have a young core.
Matthews has played 12 seasons in the league. He has represented two title-contending teams like the Milwaukee Bucks and LA Lakers in his last two campaigns.
Matthews is a remarkable perimeter defender. That's one area the Indiana Pacers have been looking to improve on ahead of the 2021-22 season. The 34-year-old is also a respectable 3-point shooter. He has made 37.9% of his shots from long range in his career.
Stephenson, on the other hand, has been away from the NBA since the 2018-19 season, last suiting up for the LA Lakers. He played in the CBA for the Liaoning Flying Tigers during the 2019-20 campaign. Stephenson is aiming for an NBA return. The 31-year-old has worked out in front of multiple teams like the Milwaukee Bucks and Dallas Mavericks, among others.
Lance Stephenson is a familiar face for the Indiana Pacers faithful. He enjoyed the best stints of his career with the franchise. He was also part of the 2012-13 and 2013-14 rosters that made it to the Eastern Conference Finals. He started 150 games for the team during that stretch.
The Indiana Pacers have applied for a disabled player exception that will allow them to sign a replacement for Edmond Sumner. Considering the limited options in free agency, Wesley Matthews and Lance Stephenson appear to be the best players the Pacers could look to sign. Either of them could help the team with their experience in crunch situations.