Ex-Arizona Wildcat T.J. McConnell continues to be a joy with Pacers

Justin Ford-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Gimino

Scrolling through Twitter on nights when the Indiana Pacers play seems to inevitably take me to a T.J. McConnell highlight. Or two. Or three.

The former Arizona Wildcats point guard -- Tucson's favorite player of the Sean Miller era? -- continues to do what nobody thought he could do: Play in the NBA and be really darn good at it.

This is his first season in Indiana after four seasons with the Philadelphia 76ers, where he averaged 6.4 points, 4.7 assists and 22.0 minutes across 352 games (73 starts). He's still doing T.J. things in Indiana, averaging 6.8 points and 5.2 assists in 18.8 minutes per game.

Even without much of a threat of a 3-point shot, the 27-year-old looks like he can be a backup point guard in the NBA for quite some time … and be a joy on whatever team he plays for. McConnell on Wednesday night had eight assists in 18 minutes in a win over the Minnesota Timberwolves, drawing more praise from his head coach.

"We talk about T.J. it seems like every game," said coach Nate McMillan. "That's what he does -- we look for him to pick the tempo up, get us going, get us running, and he did a good job again tonight of changing the tempo and playing fast, creating opportunities for guys and knocking down a couple shots himself."

With the current Arizona Wildcats having lost of five of seven games, here is something to feel good about. Take a look:

And DEFINITELY take a look at this:

And, by all means, LISTEN to this:

Comments (1)
No. 1-1
Gary Randazzo
Gary Randazzo


Absolutely brilliant stuff from McConnell. Hearing this, it's so easy to understand why he has defied the odds and become a staple in the NBA.