Evan Turner’s journey from being the No. 2 pick in the 2010 NBA Draft to the Trail Blazers has been an eventful one. Now with his fourth team, Turner spoke with Basketball Insiders’ Dennis Chambers about his experience playing with the 76ers upon his return to Philadelphia on Wednesday.
Turner joined a promising group of young players—headlined by a 27-year-old Andre Iguodala—in Philadelphia prior to the 2010-11 season. After just three and half seasons, Turner was shipped away to the Indiana Pacers by the Sixers former President of Basketball Operations Sam Hinkie—a move that is now remembered as part of “The Process”.
Prior to being traded to the Pacers, Turner had only served as a full-time starter for one season. With that lack of opportunity in mind, Turner shared this statement with Chambers:
“I don’t think I really ever had a chance to shoulder it, to tell you the truth,” Turner told Basketball Insiders. “I didn’t start my first two years, but numbers wise I thought I did well. Nobody averaged more than 13 or 14. We were a great unit. My third year, my first year starting, I thought I did pretty well for a first-year starter. We missed the playoffs, which is always tough. Within the next year, it got blown up.”
Despite his disappointment with how things played out with the Sixers, Turner has found a way to put a positive spin on the situation:
“Honest opinion, I don’t think I ever fully got the chance,” Turner said. “But I got the chance to do a lot of great things. Learn how to win, learn how to defend, learn how to prepare.”
Since departing Philadelphia, Turner has been to the playoffs each year. With a lucrative contract now under his belt, Turner shared his upbeat feelings on his revamped NBA career:
“It’s been fine,” Turner said. “On the up and up, I was fortunate to make the playoffs every year since leaving Philly. I made the playoffs two out of three, or three out of the four years that I was here. It’s cool, it’s a blessing. Healthy, stable, and living the dream.”
You can read Chambers’ full interview with Turner by following this link.