Evan Turner Named 2017-18 Maurice Lucas Honoree
Annual Award Given to Trail Blazers Player Who Exemplifies the Spirit of Lucas
PORTLAND, Ore. (April 11, 2018) – Portland Trail Blazers guard/forward Evan Turner has been chosen as the recipient of the 2017-18 Maurice Lucas Award, the team announced today. President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey; Vice President of Social Responsibility Christa Stout; and Pam Lucas, widow of Maurice Lucas, will present the award to Turner prior to the Trail Blazers regular-season finale tonight versus the Utah Jazz at the Moda Center.
The annual award was created in 2010-11 to honor the Trail Blazers player who best represents the indomitable spirit of Maurice Lucas through his contributions on the court and in the community, as well as in support of his teammates and the organization. In honor of the award, the Trail Blazers will make a $5,000 donation to a charity selected by Turner.
“The combination of Evan’s competitive spirit and intensity on the floor along with his contributions in the Portland community make him an ideal recipient of the Maurice Lucas Award,” said Olshey.
Turner is averaging 8.3 points (44.8% FG, 32.3% 3-PT, 85.0% FT), 3.1 rebounds and 2.2 assists through 78 games (39 starts) with the Trail Blazers this season. The second-year Trail Blazer tallied a season-high 22 points January 1 at Chicago and has reached double digits in scoring in five of his last eight games.
Local nonprofits and schools have been positively impacted by Turner’s community outreach since his arrival in Portland in 2016. Alder Elementary School has been a prime beneficiary of his generosity through donations of recess balls, technical equipment and printers; winters coats for more than 500 students; and enough cookies for the entire school to enjoy a special holiday party. Turner has also been a driving force behind successful partnerships with Fred Meyer Stores to collect winter coats for local children; and with the American Diabetes Association to promote “Let’s Play Portland” and encourage healthy living, exercise and diabetes awareness at Menlo Park Elementary School. His “Blessings in a Backpack” program have benefited school children in Portland; Turner’s hometown of Chicago; and in Columbus, Ohio, where he played college basketball at Ohio State University.
“There is no better way to exhibit the traits of Maurice Lucas than through hard work, determination and tenacity on the court; and a commitment to building communities off the court,” said McGowan. “That’s what makes Evan such a deserving honoree this season.”
Former Trail Blazers All-Star Maurice Lucas passed away on October 31, 2010 at the age of 58. A beloved member of the franchise and the community, "The Enforcer" was a central figure on the Trail Blazers 1976-77 NBA Championship team. The Trail Blazers honored Lucas by retiring his uniform number (No. 20) on Nov. 4, 1988.
Lucas averaged 15.6 points, 8.7 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 0.72 blocked shots over five seasons (1976-80, 1987-88) as a Trail Blazer. During Portland's 1976-77 NBA Championship season, Lucas led the team in scoring (20.2), field goals made (8.0), free throws made (4.2), offensive rebounds (2.4) and minutes (36.2).
Selected to the All-Star Game in three straight seasons from 1977-79, Lucas is one of five three-time All-Stars in Trail Blazers history (LaMarcus Aldridge, Clyde Drexler, Brandon Roy, Sidney Wicks). He most recently served as an assistant coach with the Trail Blazers for five seasons from 2005-10, and previously in 1988-89.
MAURICE LUCAS AWARD WINNERS
2017-18 – Evan Turner
2016-17 – Al-Farouq Aminu
2015-16 – Ed Davis
2014-15 – LaMarcus Aldridge
2013-14 – Robin Lopez
2012-13 – Damian Lillard
2011-12 – Wesley Matthews
2010-11 – LaMarcus Aldridge