To the casual NBA fan, Lance Stephenson is only synonymous with the choke sign that he blasted towards Lebron James! In the time since, Stephenson's game has grown by leaps and bounds. The 2013-14 season is his fourth in the league, which is serving as his coming out party! In the first trimester of this season he has already recorded three triple doubles! His 36 minute averages are as followed, 14 pts, 7 rbs, and 5 ast. He has been so impresive, many experts see him as a very real possibility for an All Star appearance. He is a large, strong combo gaurd 6'5" with a 6'11" wingspan. He has excellent vision and passing ability, he also has outstanding ball handling skills, plays ferocious defense and is wielding a much imrpoved three point shot .374%. He has drawn comparisons to players such as Lebron, Dwayne Wade, and James Harden.
The James Harden comparison may be more relevant than most would realize. The correlation being, both played for small market teams who were reluctant to dip their team salary into the luxary tax. On the outside looking in, it seams that the Pacers will try to retain his services next summer. This will be a challenge due to several factors, the first being the Pacers look to already have 65,000,000 million in salary commitments for the 2014-15 season. That is only for eleven players, should they keep everyone. There is also a scenario were Paul Goerge's salary may get a bump ala the "Derick Rose rule". It was reported by hoopshype that rival executives beleive Stephenson will earn somewere between 7-9 million per season. All this adds up to it being extremely difficult for Indiana to retain the services of their emerging star.
In conclusion, I feel Stephenson could be the mechanism that catapults the Magic out of its rebuilding stage. If he was added to a promising young core, in conjuction with what is projected to be two lottery picks in the loaded 2014 draft class. The Magic, with these additions and our established assets could be serious contenders in the 2014-15 season.