DALLAS – Indiana Pacers center/power forward Myles Turner sure has a big fan in Dallas Mavericks coach Rick Carlisle.
As his team prepares to open the season tonight at 6 in Indiana against the Pacers, Carlisle spent a few minutes gushing about Turner.
"He’s a monster athlete,’’ Carlisle said. "He’s seven feet, he’s an above the rim force on offense inside, and he shoots the 3-point shot with ease on the outside.’’
Turner graduated from Euless Trinity High School in 2014, played one season at Texas and was the 11th overall pick of the 2015 NBA Draft. He then proceeded to make the all-rookie second team after averaging 10.3 points, 5.5 rebounds and 1.4 blocks in only 22.8 minutes per game last year.
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Mavs center Andrew Bogut will find himself often trying to contain Turner tonight, and he’s expecting a huge challenge.
"He’s one of the guys in the league that not people are talking about that I think is one of the best young big men in the league,’’ Bogut said. "He can really shoot the ball well, he’s much improved again.
"He had a great rookie year. It’ll be a tough matchup for me. He likes to play outside a little bit more than most big men.’’
And because Turner frequently floats to the outside for the offensive production, that could cause problems for a player like Bogut.
"The kid Turner is very, very difficult to guard because of his size and athleticism and skill, and he can shoot from way outside,’’ Carlisle said. "He’s one of those next generation bigs that are going to define the future of our game and he’s a very, very difficult matchup.’’