Myles Turner is one of the best young big men in the NBA and is expected to take a big step forward in the 2018-19 NBA season with the Indiana Pacers. After being hit with criticism last season, Turner hit the gym hard this offseason. He made major strides with his body and is primed for a big year.
According to a report from Shams Charania of The Athletic, Turner has agreed to a four-year, $80 million contract extension with the Pacers. Turner was set to test restricted free agency next offseason if he didn't get a new deal done by Monday's deadline.
— Shams Charania (@ShamsCharania) October 15, 2018
ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reports the deal isn't yet set in stone, but the sides are hashing out terms:
Pacers President Kevin Pritchard and agent JR Hensley still working on a contract extension for center Myles Turner, both tell ESPN. Expectation is deal can get done before 6 PM ET deadline, but they're still going back and forth on numbers for a 4-year deal in $70M-plus range.
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) October 15, 2018
It sure looks like this deal will get done, so Kevin Pritchard is once again making the right move for the Pacers. After taking over the general manager duties from Larry Bird last offseason, Pritchard already has Indiana on the right track for years to come. Trading Paul George for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis was ridiculed when it happened, but now it looks like a genius move.
Signing Turner to a long-term extension before this season is an ideal situation for the Pacers. Not only do they get one of their key players locked up, they also avoid the risk of another team paying more than Indiana wants to spend to keep him.
Turner is also likely to have a much bigger season in 2018-19 than he did last year, which would have forced the Pacers to pay him more no matter what other teams were offering.
Last season with the Pacers, Turner ended up averaging 12.7 points, 6.4 rebounds, and 1.8 blocks per game. He shot 47.9 percent from the field overall and knocked down 35.7 percent of his 3-point attempts.
Expect to see those numbers rise from Turner this season, especially with a new contract set to be under his belt. Indiana needed to make sure it kept its starting center, and Pritchard was able to get the job done.