Evan Turner is the primary bench scorer for the Boston Celtics, and this year he has been terrific on both ends of the floor, but does he have a shot to win the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award?
Evan Turner is a very different type of NBA small swingman. He cannot really shoot from deep and he is not very athletic either, but he knows how to score in a variety of other ways. Turner can also play the point guard position because he is a pretty good ball-handler and facilitator.
The thing that makes Turner so special is that he can create his own shot on any given possession because he is usually matched up with players smaller then him. This is why he has been so important for the Boston Celtics and this is why he is in the conversation for the NBA Sixth Man of the Year award.
Turner is averaging 10.5 points, 4.4 assists and 4.9 rebounds per game coming off the bench. He has started in only 12 games due to players like Jae Crowder, Avery Bradley and Marcus Smart being out. He averages 28.0 minutes per game, which is a lot for a player that comes off the bench.
Turner is definitely in the conversation for the Sixth Man award with players like Jamal Crawford and Jeremy Lin. Crawford is probably the frontrunner right now because usually the award goes to a player who averages the most points per game off the bench. Crawford averages 14.0 points per game, which is the more than both Lin (11.7 PPG), and Turner (10.5 PPG).
Last year, Lou Williams won the award and he averaged 15.5 points and 25.2 minutes per game, and he did not start in one game for the Toronto Raptors. Isaiah Thomas was also in the running last year to win the award, averaging 19.0 points per game, but Williams ended up getting the award basically because he was with one team for the whole season.
So Turner probably will not win the award because he is not the highest scorer as a reserve, but he deserves to be in the conversation because of how much he helps the Celtics win games.
Turner has not missed a game this year, and he has been putting up impressive numbers all season long. He is clutch for a player that comes off the bench, and he usually plays in crunch-time for the Celtics. He is not afraid to take the big shot down the stretch, and he is a very efficient shooter (45.6 percent from the field).
He is a very poor three-point shooter (22.8 percent), but he has realized recently that there is no need for him to shoot from deep.
Turner has been playing really well for the Celtics all season long, and Boston would be struggling if he did not help out the second unit. He can create his own shot anytime he wants, and his mid-range jumpshot is excellent. Turner is also a great defender, unlike many of the other sixth man candidates. He can guard multiple positions, and he has great hands to disrupt passing lanes.
Turner is not going to win the sixth man award, but he certainly is in the conversation. Turner should get some first-place votes because of how much he helps the Celtics on both ends of the floor, unlike Lin and Crawford, who are just good on one end of the floor.
Whoever has the best offensive numbers usually receives the award (except for last year), but this year Crawford is looking like the frontrunner to win the award.
Turner is having an excellent season and it is not going unnoticed by fans and people around the league.