Tyrese Haliburton's historic November and what it means for the Pacers

Tyrese Haliburton just wrapped up a ridiculously impressive month of November, but what does it mean for the Indiana Pacers?
Indiana Pacers, Tyrese Haliburton, NBA Trade Rumors
Indiana Pacers, Tyrese Haliburton, NBA Trade Rumors / Sam Navarro-USA TODAY Sports

Tyrese Haliburton is a great player, but nobody could have guessed how well he has been playing as of late. November of 2023 has been a new high point in the career of the Pacers point guard, and this one will set the bar for any point guard in the league this season.

In 13 games, Haliburton has put up historic numbers comparable to only two players. In these 13 games, Haliburton has averaged 28.6 points (seventh in the league), 11.7 assists (leading the league), and 3.2 rebounds while shooting 53% from the field, 47% from three on 9.2 attempts per game, and 88% from the free throw line to make for an incredible 69% true shooting.

While this seems impressive enough on paper, it truly shines when you look at NBA history and realize only Michael Jordan and LeBron James are the only other players to average 25 points and 10 assists while shooting 50% from the field and 40% from beyond the arc.

Everyone knew Haliburton was good and rapidly improving, but nobody was expecting this kind of production from him. Haliburton's ability to make shots from everywhere on the floor, combined with his laser court vision and flashy passes, make him a matchup nightmare on offense as he has given opposing defenders fits all month, twice scoring over 40 points and dishing out over 14 assists four times in November.

If you put his three-point shooting into perspective, he lines up with the greatest shooter of all time and beats him in volume.

However, despite Haliburton's individual success so far, the Pacers have not been able to turn that success into wins as much as they'd like to, as the month of November has been quite rocky for Indiana. In these 13 games played, Indiana has a mediocre record of 7-6, which, while not the greatest on paper, looks even worse when you set every game aside.

While Indiana has had impressive performances, such as a 41-point win over San Antonio, a come-from-behind win over Milwaukee, and a high-scoring thriller against Atlanta, they have also lost plenty of winnable games.

Take, for example, the Charlotte Hornets matchup on November 4, where Indiana lost by one point despite 43 points from Haliburton, or the 12-point loss against Orlando, which looked far worse to people who watched the game, with Indiana being down by over 20 points at times.

Indiana's specialty this season has been their constant loss of winnable games. While the Orlando loss was chalked up to facing the best defense in the league and Haliburton having an off night, the same cannot be said about three of the last four Pacers games.

These games include a one-point loss to Toronto, a four-point home loss to the lowly Portland Trail Blazers, and most recently, a 10-point loss to the Miami Heat despite a career-high 44 points from Haliburton.

Predictably, when a player plays so well in losing efforts, it starts to frustrate him, and Haliburton is no different. In a recent interview, he discussed the fact that he has not made it to the playoffs yet, not with the Kings or with Indiana, and he is willing to put individual success aside for the betterment of the team.

In fact, after the loss to Miami and scoring 44 points for a new career-high, Haliburton still stated that he questioned what he could have done better for the team to win.

For a player to score a career-high and still come up on the losing end and talk about what he could have done better is extremely selfless, and throughout his Indiana tenure, Haliburton has shown a clear willingness to put the team before himself.

These comments and his impressive play in losses have led to some Pacers fans demanding the team make a trade before it's too late. After all, being the best offense in the league is not as enjoyable when your defense is simultaneously the worst in the league, which it is for the Pacers.

Many players have been on fans' radars, such as OG Anunoby and Pascal Siakam from the Raptors, Mikal Bridges from the Nets, Lauri Markkanen from the Utah Jazz, and the Clippers' Paul George. In conjunction with these trade requests, some fans have grown tired of Bennedict Mathurin and have demanded he be shipped out for a star to help the team win now, as his growth so far this season has been stunted due to a combination of poor play and inconsistent minutes from Rick Carlisle.

While making a trade is not the worst idea, it is still important to realize that Haliburton is only 23 years old and is signed until 2029 more or less. The team has time to get him help before it's too late. However, this harkens back to the days of Paul George and Victor Oladipo, where a combination of late timing and injuries shortened or otherwise shut the team's contending window before they could capitalize.

Understandably, Pacers fans do not want the same to happen to Haliburton, who has shown a desire to play in Indiana for the long haul and will most likely be patient no matter which direction the team goes. However, with the history this team has and how well Haliburton has been playing, it is understandable for Pacers fans to be impatient and want a change sooner rather than later.

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Only time will tell where the Pacers go from here and if Haliburton can keep this stellar play up for the rest of the season, but one thing is for sure. There will never be another Tyrese Haliburton, and Pacers fans need to remember that.