The Indiana Pacers have two players that will be playing in the 2014 NBA All-Star Game in Paul George and Roy Hibbert. George will be starting and Hibbert was selected by the coaches as a reserve, both players being deserving of the honors. However, many believe that a third Pacer should be representing the team in New Orleans in a week and a half: Lance Stephenson.
Stephenson currently leads the league in triple-doubles and has pieced together a fantastically productive year. While none of his averages are wowing alone, his average line of 14.2 points, 7.3 rebounds, 5.3 assists and 0.7 steals per game on 50 percent shooting is impressive when put all together. Moreover, Stephenson is a player that undoubtedly would have brought excitement to the All-Star Game had he not been snubbed.
On Tuesday night as the Pacers took on the Atlanta Hawks, Stephenson gave everyone a little taste of how breath-taking he can be. Calling his own number on a 2-on-4 fast break, Stephenson garnered a full head of steam towards the rim, rose up and converted a ridiculous shot attempt through contact. However, the contact sent him tumbling to the ground.
Stephenson stayed in to shoot his foul shots, but left the game soon after and stayed out for the rest of the contest with a lot of pain in his lower back, which actually is somewhat of a relief considering how nasty the spill that he took was.
There’s no word on if Stephenson will miss any time looking forward, but the Pacers have to be hoping that’s not the case. Danny Granger would more than likely slip into the starting lineup if Stephenson were to miss time and while he has been a prolific scorer in the past, he doesn’t affect the game in as many ways as Stephenson can. If he misses time, his impact will be greatly missed in Indiana.