Why don't the Pacers seem to trust Jarace Walker?

With Bennedict Mathurin out for the year, Jarace Walker was expected to get extended minutes for the Pacers. Instead, he played just three minutes against the Magic. Why don't they trust him?
Mar 1, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA;  Indiana Pacers forward Jarace Walker (5) looks to pass
Mar 1, 2024; New Orleans, Louisiana, USA; Indiana Pacers forward Jarace Walker (5) looks to pass / Stephen Lew-USA TODAY Sports

The Indiana Pacers selected Jarace Walker 8th overall in the 2023 NBA Draft after trading back with the Wizards. Walker was taken after one year at Houston in which he averaged 11.2 points, 6.8 rebounds, 1.8 assists, 1 steal, and 1.3 blocks per game. He also shot 46.5% from the field and 34.7% from three.

Indiana took him that high because they liked his potential and his physical skills. He's 6'8 and 240 pounds. With that kind of size, he can switch 1-4 and guard effectively. We've even seen that at times with the Pacers. He also has the ability to get some blocks in help-defense situations.

With Bennedict Mathurin now out for the year, we expected to finally get some extended Walker minutes in Orlando. Instead, he played just three first-half minutes before sitting the rest of the game. Rick Carlisle clearly doesn't trust him. But why is that the case?

Jarace Walker's shot selection might be the reason the Pacers don't trust him

In the three minutes Walker played against the Magic, the only stats he put up were 0-2 from the field and a foul. Neither of the shots he took were good decisions, especially the pull-up from just right of the nail. That shot selection may have been what made Carlisle sit him the rest of the game.

Walker has had the propensity to put up some bad shots this year. He's averaging just 10 minutes a game and is shooting 39% from the field. A big reason for that low shooting percentage is his bad shot selection. The problem with that is after he takes a couple of bad shots, he immediately stops even looking for his shot and just hot-potatoes the ball to someone else.

Yet, Walker is still a rookie. This is what happens with rookies! They need time to play through their mistakes and be given some rope to figure out how they fit into the NBA game. I understand the Pacers are in a standings race right now, but Carlisle still needs to develop Walker.

Put Tyrese Haliburton and Aaron Nesmith with a bench lineup that includes Walker if you're so concerned about Walker's decision-making. Those guys on the court will keep the team at least afloat while Walker feels his way through the game.

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This is the time that Walker needs to be out on the court. Until McDermott comes back, there's a gaping hole on the wing that needs to be filled. Let Walker play and figure things out.