by Chad Smith
Many people believe that one of the most “under the radar” moves during the NBA off-season was the Pacers’ acquisition of Luis Scola. The sixth-year big man could start for most teams in the league, yet he is excited about his role with this Indiana team.
Scola knows he is in a great situation, and admitted that perhaps he was trying a little too hard to make a positive impact in the first few preseason games. It appears as though he is getting comfortable, just one week before the regular season opener against Orlando on October 30. After the team’s preseason win in Atlanta on Tuesday night, Luis said that this was the type of success he envisioned when he came to Indiana.
Scola averaged 13 points and 7 rebounds per game last season for the Suns. He logged 27 minutes per game, and played in all 82 games for Phoenix. It didn’t stop there for Scola, as he competed in the FIBA Americas Tournament over the summer, where he dazzled. In the consolation game, he was 10-19 shooting, scoring 23 points in a win over the Dominican Republic. He was solid throughout the entire tournament, and showed that he is capable of handling a larger role if needed.
Looking at Scola’s last five games, he has been fairly consistent. He scored in double figures in 4 of those 5 games, with the best of those Tuesday night in Atlanta when he put in 20 points on 10-15 shooting from the floor. He has averaged 19.4 minutes per contest in these last 5 games, which is going to be something the Pacers are counting on from him this year. They will need his stamina and health to stay in tact so they can give David West more rest throughout the regular season.