Pacers final month stock watch: 2 surprising risers and 1 faller

As we head into the final month of the season, it's time we take stock of who is playing well for the Pacers and who is not.

Mar 13, 2024; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) shoots the ball
Mar 13, 2024; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Chicago Bulls forward DeMar DeRozan (11) shoots the ball / Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports
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The final month of the season is going to be critical for the Indiana Pacers. They are fighting for seeding in a very bunched-up Eastern Conference. Their main goal right now is to get themselves to at least the 6th seed so they don't have to play in a play-in game,

In order for them to achieve that goal, the Pacers need to play better on defense as a team. They showed signs of that against the Magic and the Thunder but reverted to poor defense again against the Bulls. That effort has to be high all of the time down the stretch.

A few Pacers are taking the challenge head-on and have elevated their play. They know that this is winning time and the team needs them to be at their absolute best. Two guys come to mind when I think of that because they have impacted winning more than other guys on the roster as of late.

Some other Indiana Pacers have struggled to rise to the occasion and have either not played well or not played at all. If the Pacers want to make the playoffs and actually succeed, they're going to need these guys to pick it up. One guy really sticks out in that category.

First, we're going to start with the positives. Here are two guys whose stock has risen lately.

1. Myles Turner

Myles Turner has really elevated his play as of late, especially since the All-Star break. Over his last ten games, he's averaging almost 19 points, 7 rebounds, and over 2 blocks per game. He's doing all that while shooting 52% from the field and almost 41% from three.

Turner's shot-blocking has been a huge key for them as of late. In the last four games, he's had 15 blocks. Teams are afraid to go to the rim now when Turner is lurking. His timing is impeccable and he lures players into thinking they can get a shot up over him. Nope! He swats it right back in their face.

The midrange shooting is actually what I've been most impressed with lately. He's been running a pick-and-pop with Tyrese Haliburton and he's been rolling to the foul line. That shot is automatic for him. Teams have started forcing him further back to the three-point line. No problem. He'll make that too.

Turner's net rating is the best of his career. He also has the highest usage rate of his career. Those two things are related. Turner makes good decisions with the ball and good things happen when he's on the floor defensively. Obtaining Pascal Siakam has been good for him.

The next player whose stock is up might be the most underrated player on the roster.