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.