3. He has the respect of his teammates and his coach.
The piece featured quotes from many of the Pacers veteran players, as well as their hall-of-fame coach on what makes Mathurin so unique compared to many of his peers. We list a few of them below.
Tyrese Haliburton praised him for his high IQ and attacking ability.
"“He gets to the foul line at such a high rate, especially for a rookie, and you don’t do that without having an IQ and a knack for drawing fouls and how to attack the right way, what guys to attack.”"
TJ McConnell praised him for his confidence and poise in high pressure situations and settings:
"“You just really don’t see rookies with the poise, confidence, and just the skill set that he has.”"
And Rick Carlisle talked about what sets Mathurin apart from nearly every other rookie that he has ever worked with.
"“One of the defining characteristics about Benn is that while most rookies are hitting the wall right now, in the NBA season, eight games before the All-Star Break, he’s actually gaining momentum.”"
You don’t normally see that high of praise for rookies in the NBA unless they are truly on the path to superstardom. Which means that the Pacers truly got a special player with last year’s lottery pick and one that has near limitless potential.