For some reason the No. 2 overall pick in the NBA Draft usually has a curse similar to the Madden cover. Philadelphia 76ers swingman Evan Turner is turning the bad luck around by posting All-Star numbers.
Turner is having a career season as the team’s leader, and his numbers have gone up drastically across the board. The fourth-year swingman is averaging 19 points, 6.3 rebounds, 3.9 assists and a steal in 39 games. His free throw shooting is up as well as he’s shooting 81.9-percent from the line.
Turner is also on his way to a setting a career high in double-doubles as he already has eight. Since taking over as the Sixers’ main scoring option he is looking more comfortable.
He appeared to be heading in the direction of most second picks during their careers, but that direction has changed from being a complimentary role player to a leader. He is the Sixers’ leading scorer, second best passer and fourth-best rebounder.
Most second picks are either hurt throughout their career or don’t pan out to be the player teams expect them to be. The list includes Michael Kidd-Gilchrist, Derrick Williams, Hasheem Thabeet and most infamously Darko Milicic.
Turner will become a restricted free agent after this season, and the Sixers will decide whether they want to offer him a new contract. He’ll be commanding a large deal, and there will be many suitors.
The biggest question will be whether Turner can post the same numbers next season when the Sixers are expecting to bring in a star.