Orlando Magic rookie Victor Oladipo made his NBA début on Tuesday against the Indiana Pacers, approximately 55 miles from Assembly Hall, where he starred as an Indiana Hoosier. Oladipo finished Tuesday's 97-87 loss with 12 points in 23 minutes, tying Arron Afflalo for second on the team. He shot just 4-of-11 from the floor and 3-of-5 from the foul line.
The second overall pick in June's NBA Draft checked in with 5:38 to play in the first quarter, earning a rousing ovation from the crowd at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Less than three minutes later, Oladipo drilled a three-pointer from the right wing for his first NBA points.
His best highlight came at the four-minute mark of the third quarter, when the former Hoosier took a pass from E'Twaun Moore--a former Purdue Boilermaker--and threw down an emphatic, two-handed dunk in transition. He made it to the rim from the three-point arc with just one dribble.
To his scoring numbers, Oladipo added three rebounds, two assists, one steal, and three turnovers. He learned a tough lesson in NBA officiating Tuesday as the referees whistled him for two carrying violations.
Though Oladipo didn't play brilliantly, he nonetheless showed promise attacking the basket, accounting for five of the Magic's 10 free-throw attempts. Orlando very nearly set a record for modern free-throw futility in 2012/13, and Oladipo's aggressiveness and fearlessness in trying to get to the rim will certainly aid the Magic's efforts to score more efficiently, provided he shoots the resulting free throws at a better clip than the 60-percent mark he did Tuesday.
Oladipo's rookie season continues Wednesday as the Magic visit the Minnesota Timberwolves.