Bennedict Mathurin shines in Summer League debut, completes highlight dunk in Pacers' win
"That’s was just one, coach" is what he told coach Ronald Nored after the game. Mathurin was patient and smooth, finishing with 23 points.
LAS VEGAS — On their first offensive possession of the game, one Pacers draft pick connected with another for a score.
From a sideline out-of-bounds play, Andrew Nembhard drove the left-lane line, then kicked it out to the right wing. No. 6 pick Bennedict Mathurin didn’t hesitate and swished a 3-pointer right in front of the team bench.
It got the Pacers off to a strong start in their first of five summer league games in Las Vegas. They were in full control, handled the Charlotte Hornets and led after each quarter en route to a 96-84 win. And it wasn’t even that close.
Mathurin was patient and smooth. He finished with an easy 23 points, four rebounds and a steal in 20 minutes. Shots were falling for him as he made 9 of 16 from the field and 3 of his 6 attempts from distance.
“He saw the first one go in, which I think helps,” summer coach Ronald Nored said of Mathurin. “His teammates recognized that, tried to put him in good situations. We try to let the guys play and call their own plays. You give a guy like that the green light after making a couple, anything can happen.”
Mathurin and the rest of the Summer Pacers played with a joy for the game; it had been over four months since most had played in a game. And here is a superb opportunity for them to play in front of evaluators from all 30 NBA teams, along with overseas scouts.
This Pacers group includes seven players expected to make the opening day roster, so this summer squad should be good.