Myles Turner and the Indiana Pacers have agreed on a four-year contract extension worth $72 million, with up to $8 million more in bonuses, according to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN.
Statistically, the big man took a step backward in 2017-18, seeing declines in points, rebounds, blocks, steals, and minutes per game. His advanced metrics took a hit as well across the board — his true shooting percentage, rate of win shares, box plus/minus, and VORP all dipped below his 2016-17 numbers.
But he continued to show improvement as a three-point shooter, hitting 35.7 percent of his shots from deep on 3.1 attempts per game, both career highs. With a solid three-point shot in tow, Turner’s the rare, coveted center who can both protect the rim on defense and stretch the floor for his teammates on offense.
Myles Turner’s New Physique
The 11th overall pick of the 2015 NBA Draft rebuilt his body this offseason, much like teammate Victor Oladipo had before his breakout 2017-18 campaign.
“Once the season was done, he had a bad taste in his mouth,” Turner’s teammate Domantas Sabonis told The Indianapolis Star in a story that ran over the weekend, before the announcement of Turner’s extension. “He just wanted to come out, be a whole new player.”
Turner estimated to the paper that he’s added about five pounds and cut his 14 percent body fat nearly in half.
“Myles is amazing. He’s changed his body. You can see it,” Oladipo told the Star. “He’s more confident. His head is in the right place.”
A Logjam at Center
The Pacers are investing heavily in a position at which they were already deep. Sabonis was a key cog in Indiana’s run to the playoffs, and though he and Turner have shared the floor, head coach Nate McMillan considers them both to be centers.
“What I’m saying in that situation, there’ll be teams that give us the opportunity to play that matchup. That lineup is not really a strength of ours where teams are playing small basketball,” McMillan told the Star. “There’s been a lot of conversation about Myles and Domantas. They play the same position. They’re both 5s. You’ve got two centers with one of them trying to play the 4 spot.”
Over the offseason, the Pacers signed center Kyle O’Quinn to a one-year deal worth roughly $4.5 million.