Central Notes: Oladipo, George, Nwaba, Bulls

The Pacers‘ acquisition of Victor Oladipo — along with Domantas Sabonis — in last summer’s Paul George trade was seen by many as a steal for the Thunder. Several months into the season, however, Oladipo’s play has elevated him to star status, Mark Montieth of NBA.com writes.

Through the Pacers’ first 25 games, Oladipo has posted a career-highs in PPG (24.5), RPG (5.3), field-goal percentage (.485%), and three-point shooting percentage (.444%). In his own words, Oladipo has put in all the work necessary to show that he’s a better player than he showed in his first four seasons with the Magic and Thunder.

“Y’all might be surprised,” Oladipo said. “I put in the work. I work every day. I have no limit to how hard I work. I’m trying to be great. There’s no in-between and I can’t settle for anything less.”

Oladipo, still just 25 years old, is also setting other career-highs, including a 47-point performance against the Nuggets over the weekend. The Pacers are also playing like a playoff caliber team, occupying fifth place in the Eastern Conference with a 16-11 record; Oladipo has been a major reason for that.

Check out other news around the Central Division:

  • George will make his first appearance as a visiting player on Wednesday when the Thunder visits the Pacers in Indiana. While George’s run with the team included plenty of success, his impending return is the subject of mixed emotions, Jim Ayello of USA Today writes. Former teammates such as Lance Stephenson and Thaddeus Young spoke glowingly of their former teammates while Myles Turner said George did not “leave on the best terms.”
  • David Nwaba was a mere waiver wire acquisition by the Bulls but he has become a vital part of the team, NBA.com’s Sam Smith writes“His skill is he goes out and plays harder than everybody else on the floor,” said Bulls head coach Fred Hoiberg. As a reserve, Nwaba is averaging 8.3 PPG for the 6-20 Bulls.
  • While Bobby Portis and Nikola Mirotic‘s violent preseason scuffle that resulted in suspensions and facial surgery captured headlines, the duo’s recent on-court competition for the Bulls has been a pleasant change of pace, Vincent Goodwill of NBC Sports Chicago.
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8 thoughts on “Central Notes: Oladipo, George, Nwaba, Bulls

  1. Thomas Swanson

    Players might like creating superteams and leaving the teams that made them what they are. Fans don’t. Kyrie got booed this year. Durant got booed in OKC. George will get booed, but not as bad the way Oladipo and Sabonis have improved, and the way the Pacers are playing. George forfeited the chance at a big paycheck for a championship it doesn’t look like he’ll get.

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  2. Adam37

    So what, he’s still gonna get plenty of money. And it wasn’t necessarily his choice to goto Thunder. He just no longer wanted to be in Indy. Better he let them know and they got something for him. Also doesn’t look likely at this point that he’ll consider staying so the losers in this are OKC.

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    • Thomas Swanson

      I believe in what Kevin Pritchard said happened and I’m glad how it turned out. It definitely didn’t turn out how George wanted it to. George may have to stay in OKC because he has no better option. I just hope Oladipo and Sabonis keep it up. Could care less what George does.

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  3. Reflect

    Wasn’t Oladipo in the Serge Ibaka trade? Or how did he get from the Magic to the Thunder?

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    • CubsRebsSaints

      Yeah the the Thunder stole him then. That trade single-handed LH cost the guy his job. And then OKC had some talent capital with the Oladipo trade, and drafting of Sabonis. And than squandered it, by trying to do too much. A la James Harden!

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  4. Thomas Swanson

    Think Oladipo was in serge Ibaka trade. OKC is making George, Westbrook, and Carmelo (they’ve always said he’s not a team player) look bad.
    Pacers-OKC on at 7 on ESPN followed by Hornets at Rockets at 9:30 p.m.
    Kevin McHale says Harden doesn’t play defense. Etwaan Moore had career high 35 against them Monday night and Jrue Holiday had 36.

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