Ben Moore reaches agreement with Indiana Pacers
Forward becomes third Mustang from 2016-17 roster to head to NBA Posted on 06/25/2017 by PonyFans.com
|SMU forward Ben Moore has agreed on a partially guaranteed contract with the Indiana Pacers (photo by Max).
Already one of the most successful men’s basketball programs in the nation in recent years, SMU drew some national attention this week when two players were drafted: forward Semi Ojeleye was picked by the Boston Celtics, and guard Sterling Brown is headed to Milwaukee after he was drafted by the Philadelphia 76ers, who then traded his rights to the Bucks.
A third Mustang is headed to the NBA, as forward Ben Moore has agreed to a partially guaranteed deal with the Indiana Pacers as an undrafted free agent.
How — or whether — Moore makes the team, of course, remains to be seen. Much of the talk leading up to the draft centered around the Pacers and whether or not they would trade star forward Paul George. They didn’t, but considering the fact that George reportedly has told the team he will leave after the 2017-18 season as a free agent, the front office has to be making plans for the post-George era, possibly by the trade deadline in the upcoming season.
The Pacers already have a young center in Myles Turner, frontcourt veterans like Al Jefferson and Kevin Seraphin, and fortified their front line during the draft with the selections of UCLA forward T.J. Leaf and UCLA center Ike Anigbogu. So whether Moore makes the team, obviously, remains to be seen.
But Pacers fans will be forgiven if they feel a touch of nostalgia when watching Moore play. After all, when he coached Moore at SMU, former Pacers head coach Larry Brown frequently compared Moore to Derrick McKey, who played eight of his 15 NBA seasons with the Pacers. The resemblances between Moore and McKey are numerous, from their body type to their game, which relies heavily on unselfishness, exceptional basketball IQ and a versatile array of skills.
Like McKey, who ended his NBA career with 10,266 points, 4,387 rebounds and 1,072 steals, Moore can do a little of everything. Brown and current SMU head coach Tim Jankovich asked Moore to fill a number of roles for the Mustangs, from bringing up the court as a point forward, playing all three frontcourt positions on both ends of the floor.
Moore finished his SMU career with 1,214 points, 780 rebounds, 102 steals, 125 blocked shots and 242 assists.