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‘He’s an NBA scorer’: Bennedict Mathurin once again flashed potential with Pacers

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Indiana Pacers rookie Bennedict Mathurin had another tremendous performance on Tuesday and took a moment to remind everyone watching why he felt as though he was the best player on the court.

Mathurin, the sixth pick last month, produced a game-high 20 points, five rebounds, three assists and three steals in 19 minutes of action in a 101-87 win over the Detroit Pistons. He went 5-of-9 from the field and was a plus-23 while on the court.

The 20-year-old used his athleticism to create for himself and found great success getting to the line, converting on 9-of-10 attempts. He put each of his offensive skills on display and that resulted in his second 20-point outing in Las Vegas.

“He’s an NBA scorer right now,” Pacers head coach Rick Carlisle said on NBA TV. “He has tremendous upside because there are parts of his game that are still very raw and that’s exciting. We view that as an exciting thing, not a negative by any stretch.”

Mathurin went to work early, scoring six points alone in the first quarter. On one possession, Mathurin dropped in a long, step-back shot over Pistons guard Kameron McGusty and promptly beat his chest and yelled out, “I’m the best!”

The display was very reminiscent of what Mathurin told the Washington Post in an interview last month. He said that no one in the NBA is better than him and even said LeBron James would have to prove himself to him on the court.

He reaffirmed that stance during his interview on NBA TV.

It’s just me growing up. I just don’t think anybody is better than me. I just go on the court and play like it’s my last time playing. I just hoop out there.

Mathurin certainly brings a level of confidence with him to the Pacers and that has been evident in his play thus far. Pacers summer league head coach Ronald Nored believes he is reading the game better now and getting to his spots with ease as he plays more.

Though Mathurin is performing well in exhibition games, the early showing has to be encouraging for the Pacers. They view him as a key addition to the roster and will be looking forward to seeing how he develops in the coming months.

Indiana returns to action on Friday at 9 p.m. EDT.

This post originally appeared on Rookie Wire! Follow us on Facebook!

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