Friday afternoon, Athletic’s Shams Charania reported that the Pacers are guaranteeing Keifer Sykes’ contract for the remainder of the season.
Sykes joined the Pacers in late December after the team freed reserve point guard Brad Wanamaker. It’s been less than two weeks, but with all the COVID roster shuffle and another player, Kelan Martin, recently released, Sykes appears to have been here all season.
While his game has been inconsistent and not necessarily more productive than Wanamaker on most nights, when he’s got the three-way ball, Sykes is certainly a solid option for a reserve point guard.
Call him whatever you like, but now you have to call Sykes an NBA player and that means a lot to the pro fellow who has been around the world and returned keeping the hoop dream he heard on Friday alive.
After practice Monday, Indy Star screenwriter James Boyd asked the Chicago native what this means and how his mother will react to the news. Phew, it got dusty in a hurry.
“She deserves it more than anyone. … the sacrifices she made, man. We come from poverty. We had nothing. pic.twitter.com/4JC9VJNSpW
– James Boyd (@RomeovilleKid) January 7, 2022
The 28-year-old goalkeeper has been in the pro league since 2015, when he started playing in the G-League for the Austin Spurs. From there he played in Korea, Turkey (a few times), Italy, China, Greece (a few times), Australia and finally Fort Wayne before doing that last two hour hike on the I -69 until the NBA.
The above list does not include playing the basketball tournament Sykes did this summer, hitting the championship winner to win his team, Boeheim’s army the TBT title and the winner takes the prize. a million dollars.
But despite the obvious financial impact, the news the Pacers delivered to Sykes on Friday was invaluable considering how far he went to secure this opportunity.
And mom ? Yeah, she loves it!
Add Sykes to the list of individual Pacers roster players who are really easy to root for, even though the team’s collective results have been hard to root for this season.