Evan Turner talks with the NBA TV crew ahead of his Pacers debut
Before stepping onto the court at Bankers Life Fieldhouse for the first time in an Indiana Pacers uniform, Evan Turner talked about his emotions on joining the team, his role, and much more in an interview on NBA TV. Turner, who was acquired last week in a trade with Philadelphia, chatted with Ernie Johnson, Chris Webber and Greg Anthony during the NBA TV Fan Night Pregame Show.
In addition to airing on FOX Sports Indiana, tonight’s Pacers game vs the Los Angeles Lakers (7 p.m. EST) will be televised nationally on NBA TV.
Turner’s comments are below:
On whether it feels like he won the lottery going to the Indiana Pacers: “I was actually shocked because when I got the word it was past 3 o’clock, so I was just headed home. I just know my phone started blowing up, and I got text messages from my agent and stuff saying I’d been traded, so it was kind of a shock. I was definitely blessed and, you know excited to come to Indy because, obviously, they’re doing so well and I want to play in the playoffs and everything.”
On making the transition to a team trying to win a championship and his role: “I just think the biggest thing is trying to fit in, that’s one thing I’m focused on right now. Kind of trying to walk the way we walk and just fit in, and try not to stop any of the momentum that they [the Pacers] have. Coach [Frank] Vogel told me I’m going to be one of the key guys off the bench, and he just wants me to play the way I play, play hard and put forth a lot of effort. That’s pretty much it.”
On whether his ballhandling ability will improve Indiana’s turnover issues: “I think so, you know. Sometimes, I definitely have to keep being better at decision making, everything like that, but I think everybody could use a ballhandler and a playmaker. And I feel as though with this type of team, and the great offensive players they have, it’s a great situation for me. We can all benefit from what we do, skill-wise.”
On whether he’s nervous before his Pacers debut: “Not really, to tell you the truth. Maybe when I get out there, maybe I’ll start getting some butterflies. For right now, I’m just coming in trying to play hard and that’s pretty much it, but the whole thing is just trying to help the team and just fit in once again, and do what the Pacers do. “
On what he considers himself position-wise: “I think to a certain extent, now that I think about it, I was asked that questions a couple weeks ago, and it came down to, I guess, I’m position-less, in a certain sense. Depends on who’s out there. And with this team, I play a lot of different positions. I think I’m a basketball player in-short, and I feel like I always play better with the ball in my hands.”
On how happy he is to be with Indiana: “Pretty much I’m happy to be here. I’m happy to be back in the Midwest, I grew up in Chicago, and I went to The Ohio State University… As soon as I got traded, my social media, Pacer nation, pretty much welcomed me. [I’ve been] really excited just walking down the street these past few days, everybody’s been excited. I’m just happy to be welcomed, I’m definitely going to play hard and hopefully bring a lot of success and a lot of great memories.”