Alex Kennedy of Basketball Insiders reports that the Pacers and Timberwolves have expressed interest in Willie Reed. You may be thinking, “Who?” So, let me fill you in.
Kennedy sees Reed as a potential steal in free agency, and the numbers back him up. In Reed’s first year in the NBA, his per 36 minutes numbers were outstanding: 15.4 points, 10.3 rebounds, and 2.5 blocks. His PER is a terrific 19.2 and has a positive Net Rating (+8) and On/Off rating (+0.4).
Reed played backup minutes with the Nets last year after a long fight to get his shot in the NBA. For a few years, Reed was a D-League and Summer League stud just looking for an opportunity in the league. He averaged 17.5 points, 11 rebounds, 2 blocks over three seasons in the D-League, played in the Summer League for the Pacers two years ago, and the Heat last year (averaging 13.5 points and 7.5 rebounds) before finally finding an NBA team to offer him a contract last season.
Reed could be a very cheap option to consider for the Pacers if they deem Ian Mahinmi too expensive.
(Update) The Pacers have agreed to a deal with center Al Jefferson, and this may lessen the interest from Bird and the Pacers, but there’s still one roster spot left. Reed could battle Lavoy Allen for he backup power forward minutes.