Indiana Pacers: Paul George’s 2016 Player Preview


The Indiana Pacers‘ 2016 season doesn’t begin for quite some time. So, there will not be much news about the team until then. As a result, it is time to preview the Pacers’ players who will play key roles in 2016. It is Paul George‘s turn today.

The Indiana Pacers were on the brink of one of the biggest playoff upsets in this past year’s NBA playoffs.

The 7th-seeded Pacers were facing the 2nd-seed Toronto Raptors in the first round of the playoffs –eventually losing in seven games, thanks to Paul George.

George had perhaps the best season of his young career in 2015-16, averaging 23.1 points, 4.1 assists and 7.0 rebounds per contest. George’s 2015 campaign included an All-Star appearance in which he scored 41 points — just one point shy of breaking the record for points scored by a single player.

It’s worth noting that George accomplished all of this in just over a year removed from his horrific injury suffered in a team USA basketball scrimmage in August 2014. Some had believed that George wasn’t supposed to have such a successful season coming off of a serious injury, even originally going as far as to say that his career may have been over at the time of the injury.

Back in February, George gave some insight on his 2015 season up to that point, after coming off of his injury, per CBS Sports.

"Every time I step out on the floor, I look down at my leg,” George said Wednesday at the Indiana Pacers‘ shootaround before beginning a short, two-game road trip against the Nets. “I’ve still got the scars, still got a little bone protruding out. I just remember the journey, the rehab that it took to get to this point, and every game I’ve been playing. It’s been great. I didn’t think I’d get to this point so soon.”"

2016 Expectations

Based off of his year in 2015, the Pacers should expect another big year from George as he looks to remain the team’s No. 1 option.

With a new-and-improved roster featuring Jeff Teague, Thaddeus Young and Al Jefferson, the Pacers will now have more scoring options than just George, so perhaps his numbers dip just a tad bit — but don’t look for them to decrease significantly, if at all.

As long as George can remain healthy and be productive as he had been throughout last season, we can expect for him to make another All-Star appearance.

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In terms of the Pacers’ overall progression, with their improved roster they should be a formidable force in a rather weak Eastern Conference. On paper, the team should be in the top-four in the East at worst — all thanks to how successful of a season George and the rest of the bunch have.

Look for George to keep putting up the numbers that he has over the last few seasons that he’s had when healthy.

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