Victor Oladipo 2019-20 Season Highlights

Check out some of the top plays from Victor Oladipo's 2019-20 season.

Victor Oladipo 2020 Player Review

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Victor Oladipo 2019-20 Season Highlights

Check out some of the top plays from Victor Oladipo's 2019-20 season.
Sep 13, 2020  |  01:00

Player Review 2020: Victor Oladipo

Age: 28
Years Pro: 7
Status: Entering final season of a four-year contract.
Key Stats: Played in 23 games, including playoffs, for the Pacers after recovering from a ruptured quad tendon suffered during the 2018-2019 NBA season. Averaged 14.5 points and 2.9 assists over 27.8 minutes played per game in the regular season and 17.8 points, 2.5 assists, and 2.3 steals in four postseason contests.

When Victor Oladipo tragically ruptured his quad tendon on Jan. 23, 2019, Pacers President of Basketball Operations Kevin Pritchard had this to say about the fan favorite at the end of last season:

"Victor brings a presence. He hits the reset button every day and...that refreshing personality probably was what we missed most."

This year, Oladipo brought his coveted presence in a variety of ways. During his rehabilitation period, the former Hoosier brought infectious positivity to the bench during home games. Sporting the latest fashionable wear, he brought smiles to his teammates and fans despite going through perhaps the worst hardship of his basketball career.

PHOTO GALLERY: Victor Oladipo's 2019-20 Season in Photos »

When it was his time to shine once again, he announced his on-court presence thunderously. Fans at Bankers Life Fieldhouse didn't even care about his first six 3-point attempts going awry against the Chicago Bulls on Jan. 29 because his seventh shot was miraculous.

With nine seconds remaining Oladipo rose from the deep left wing and drilled a cold-blooded three that forced the game into overtime. He then cheered on his teammates from the bench during the extra period as the Blue & Gold emerged with the win.

"Sure I missed six, but I don't even remember missing them," he said after the game. "When I shot it, I didn't think about the six I missed. I just thought about making that one."

After missing a full season's worth of games, that moment defined how much he means to the Pacers organization.

Victor Oladipo

Photo Credit: NBAE/Getty Images

As his season continued Oladipo battled rust after more than a year away from the game. With a smaller sample size, the Maryland native had the least productive season of his career in terms of shooting percentage (39.4 percent). Additionally, his 14.5 points per game were the lowest of his career since his rookie campaign with the Orlando Magic. Although it never bothered him.

On February 27, he tallied 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting in a six-point victory over the Portland Trailblazers. From that point on, he reached double figures in all but one appearance, including the playoffs. On March 10, he scored a season-high 27 points on 9-of-16 shooting, including 5-of-7 from deep, against Boston.

He ended his roller-coaster season by scoring 20 points or more in three of the Pacers' four first-round games against the Miami Heat.

Nonetheless, it's difficult to fully evaluate Oladipo's long-term viability moving forward after just 19 games. The sudden stoppage of the season due to COVID-19 didn't help, either.

The veteran appeared to be in full control during the last three games before the halt in play as he dropped 16 twice and hit the game-winning jumper in a win in Dallas on March 8, then had the aforementioned 27 against the Celtics before his return was thrown off-track once again. Although, this time it was out of his control.

But, two things continue to be prevalent in Oladipo's game — his floor skills and his confidence. Every time he stepped on to the court, he brought a presence that only a select number of players in the NBA can bring. The playmaker still draws attention from defenses akin to the league's superstars.

Oladipo graciously accepts the challenge night in and night out. Despite his shots and passes hitting a bit left-of-center this year, he never failed to test his limits by pulling off misdirections, speeding into the paint, and attempting crafty kick-outs.

The upcoming NBA season is an important one for the two time All-Star. It's a contract year. Should he remain healthy and return to peak form, Oladipo has a chance to remain one of the NBA's biggest and brightest stars.

There's no doubt between Pacers fans that his presence would be a welcomed sight for a franchise looking to break the seemingly impenetrable first-round playoff barrier.

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