A lot of unwanted noise centered on trade rumors surrounded Myles Turner this season, just like an annual Indiana Pacers tradition. However, the longtime Pacer managed to end the year still donning the blue and gold, and he should remain in the Circle City for the foreseeable future after his newest contract extension with the only franchise he’s ever known.
Finally playing as the team’s alpha big, Turner undoubtedly turned in his best season yet, registering a bevy of career-best marks for the Pacers. Clearly, his contract extension is much-deserved, cementing him as one of the franchise’s pillars moving forward.
That being said, how did he fare overall in Year 8? Here is our player review of Myles Turner for the 2022-23 NBA Season.
2022-23 Stats: 18.0 PPG, 7.5 RPG, 1.4 APG, 2.3 BPG, 54.8 FG%, 37.3 3FG&, 78.3 FT%
Myles Turner logged his best season yet for the Indiana Pacers in 2022-23
Myles Turner was expected to amplify his production with all the void left by Domantas Sabonis, and playing with a playmaker of Tyrese Haliburton’s caliber, he definitely delivered as an offensive force, logging career-bests in points per game and field goal percentage. His three-point volume remained modest, but his clip from range this season was his highest mark in four years.
Turner also displayed an improved rebounding game, registering a career-high 7.5 boards per game. While that is far from an elite number, he has shown a lot more tenacity and persistence on the boards. His boxing out has also developed after passive stances on that end in recent years, in large part due to Sabonis’ dominance on the boards.
However, Myles’ biggest highlight this season is overarched as a pattern — he showed impeccable chemistry with Haliburton as a pick-and-roll or pick-and-pop partner. This should prove to be a major thrust for the team’s offensive profile next season.
Lastly, Indiana was a poor defensive team this season, but Turner still managed to remain as one of the league’s premiere shot blockers, though he was relatively quieter this year.
Availability is a skill, and in a league with increasing parity, the healthiest team often has the better chance of snagging a more successful run — either in a game or over a stretch in the season. In that aspect, Myles Turner has been far from the most optimal, appearing in just 62 games for the club this season.
That is a much higher number than last season’s 42, but missing 20 games is a lot. In fact, Turner hasn’t played more than 70 games in a year since the 2018-19 campaign. Also, his absence is particularly troubling for a Pacers team already running on undersized lineups on a nightly basis. That could change next season, but as currently constructed, Indy cannot afford to lose him for a substantial chunk.
Another point of improvement for Turner is managing fouls. Aggressive rim protectors like him tend to draw more could for obvious reasons, but he still has a penchant for unnecessary contact at times, especially when trying to stay vertical or when overhelping. A more polished defensive sheen from him aside from shot-blocking would help the team become sharper on the less glamorous end of the floor.
Lastly, Turner could benefit from operating even more in the extremes, meaning that shots in the paint and from the three-point line should form the sheer majority of his attempts. His mid-rangers have gone down, but if he could shun them except when necessary, his efficiency would climb even higher.
Player Grade: A-
Myles Turner proved a lot of doubters wrong this season with his strong play in Year 8 for the Indiana Pacers. His missed games drag his grade down a notch, but there’s no denying that the 27-year-old center should remain a fixture for this franchise for the near future whether fans like it or not.
Oh, wait — they should.
More from this series:
Andrew Nembhard: https://8points9seconds.com/2023/04/21/indiana-pacers-2022-23-player-grades-andrew-nembhard/
Bennedict Mathurin: https://8points9seconds.com/2023/04/23/indiana-pacers-2022-23-player-grades-bennedict-mathurin/