Myles Turner’s rebounding and pick-and-pop game shined during Team USA’s 102-86 exhibition win over Australia.
The starting center scored 15 points and grabbed a game-high 14 rebounds. USA was led in scoring by Kemba Walker with 23 points.
Australia was led by Spurs’ combo-guard Patty Mills with 19 points.
Team USA struggled in the first half, only leading 44-43 at the break after a Mills three-pointer at the buzzer. But the team caught fire from behind the arc in the second half and quickly took a 15 point lead by the end of the third quarter.
Australia poses as one of Team USA’s toughest competitors for the World Cup, as the team fields a starting lineup of all NBA players. Joining Mills is Matthew Dellavedova, Joe Ingles, Aron Baynes and Andrew Bogut.
Head Coach Greg Popovich recently described Australia as one of USA’s toughest tests.
Turner only played 19 minutes, which puts his per-36 statistics at 28.4 points and 26.53 rebounds. He was a plus-26 in the contest.
Turner showed strong chemistry with Walker and Donovan Mitchell with their pick-and-pop game. Turner made several jump shots out of the pick-and-pop and freed up looks for both guards.
Turner also showed strong decision-making out of the short roll. When Australia’s big men shagged into the paint when he caught it at the elbow, he did not hesitate to shoot the jumper.
The big-man also showed aggressiveness with his rebounding, an area of his game that has frustrated Pacers fans for his four-year NBA career.
The most promising aspect of his rebounding is that Australia has a strong rebounding frontcourt. Bogut and Baynes are big bodies that have typically given Turner trouble in the past. He did more than hold his own.
Team USA’s next exhibition is at Midnight on Saturday against Canada.