By Johnny Askounis/ firstname.lastname@example.org
The shorthanded Indiana Pacers needed 53 points from T.J. Warren to defeat the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday. Resuming their 2019-20 season with a “W” brought them to 40-26 and fifth place in the Eastern Conference.
“I’m kind of comfortable with being the underdog,” mentioned the NC State alum after making 20/29 field goals including 9/12 beyond the arc, “I got to keep doing that and keep getting better day by day.”
Warren, a former member of the Phoenix Suns who was traded to the Pacers last summer, got hot from the start of the game against the Sixers. His teammates kept on feeding him resulting in his career-high and victory.
“During the break, it was hard to find a gym but I tried to stay in shape. I play a lot of basketball. When I’m at home with my friends, when I’m playing pickup games,” he said, “I’m just born to be a hooper so just me coming out here, just playing the way I play and playing my game, being aggressive.”
Competing without fans did not hold him back. He instead reached into another level launching his Orlando start at a high level and becoming the sixth non-All-Star to score over 50 points this season, per Elias Sports Bureau.
“It doesn’t matter the environment, you’ve just got to come with it every game and stay aggressive,” he said, “Every game I feel anxious and nervous at the same time but it’s full of excitement. Tonight was one of those special nights.”
The next game for the Pacers is scheduled for Monday against the Washington Wizards.