Stud - Benendict Mathurin
After being given the starting job to begin the year, Bennedict Mathurin was eventually moved to the bench for Buddy Hield, as he was going through some struggles.
But on a night when the Indiana Pacers needed a bounce-back win, Mathurin stepped up in a big way, putting up some of the best numbers of his career.
The second-year wing finished the night with 30 points, seven rebounds, eight assists, and two steals while shooting 10-of-17 from the field and 3-of-5 from behind the three-point line.
In addition, Mathurin shot 7-of-8 from the free-throw line, showing off some of the aggressiveness that had him in the Rookie of the Year race for the majority of last season.
After the game, Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle had tons of praise for the youngster, calling it “one of his best games as a Pacer” and stating that his “visual awareness and ability to deliver the ball tonight was huge."
Heading into the season, many Pacers fans expected Mathurin to take a leap and make strides toward becoming the team’s second star next to Tyrese Haliburton. However, some early-season inconsistencies made some question this idea.
But on nights like this, fans should be reminded of just how talented Mathurin is. It may have been against the Pistons, but this was still an incredible step in.