Indiana Pacers Prospering From Paul George's Best Season

By John Raffel
Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports

Paul George can’t wait for the NBA All-Star break to end and for the Indiana Pacers to get back to business.

George has had a lot to do with the Pacers drive to a 32-21 record and a first place spot in the Central Division, as well as a third-place setting in the Eastern Conference. He’s improved immensely from his first two seasons, and he’s got the Miami Heat and New York Knicks worried about the team from Indiana.

In Wednesday’s 101-77 rout, George netted the first triple-double of his career with 23 points, 12 rebounds and 12 assists.

It was a neat way for the Pacers to snap a two-game losing streak.

George is also the third Pacer to net a triple-double this season, joining Roy Hibbert and David West in that distinction.

It’s his third NBA season and it’s been a great one for George so far. He’s averaging 17.6 points per game compared to 12.1 per game last season, and 7.8 as a rookie. His rebounding stats are 7.8 per game compared to 5.6 last year, and 3.7 two years ago. His assists per game are 4.0, compared to 2.4 and 1.1.

His shooting is about the same as in previous years but his three-point average is up. His minutes per game are eight minutes longer from his average last season.

That’s all the more proof that George has matured into an excellent NBA player. It’s among the reasons the Pacers could challenge for a spot in the NBA Finals. With George and West and others, the Pacers have the talent to contend.

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