The Indiana Pacers kicked off the 2016-17 NBA season with a win, defeating the Dallas Mavericks in a 130-121 overtime victory Wednesday night. Myles Turner and Paul George combined for 55 total points in the win -- with Turner tallying 30 of those points in what was one of the best overall performances of his young career.
While it is obviously too early into the season to overreact, it wouldn’t be egregious to say that Indiana could be in very, very good hands for the next few seasons with what both Turner and George could provide for the team.
The rest of the league already knows who Paul George is, as he’s quickly made his case of being a top-10 player over the last few seasons. Myles Turner, on the other hand, is still working his way up and gaining recognition — but he’s doing it at a quicker pace than most would have thought.
Turner was drafted No. 11 overall by the Pacers in the 2015 NBA Draft, playing one year collegiately at Texas. His rookie campaign started off slow due to him coming off of the bench and an eventual thumb injury that would see him missing extended time, but he eventually made his way into the starting rotation and was a pivotal piece for the Pacers in the playoffs.
With George in his prime and Turner trending upwards in the NBA ranks, the two could truly be something special for Larry Bird and Co. for the foreseeable future. Bird recently picked up the option on Turner’s contract — valid through the 2017-18 season.
Continuing through this season, if Turner keeps up his play, he could appear to be one of the biggest steals of his draft class.
Currently sitting at 1-1 with Friday night’s 103-94 loss to the Brooklyn Nets, the Pacers will look to bounce back from their fourth quarter collapse with a win against the Chicago Bulls in the United Center Saturday night.