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T.J. McConnell joined elite company with 15 assists off bench

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New Orleans Pelicans v Indiana Pacers Photo by Ron Hoskins/NBAE via Getty Images

T.J. McConnell’s value to a basketball team stretches far beyond the box score. That doesn’t mean he isn’t capable of putting up some big numbers from time to time.

The former Arizona point guard had 15 assists in the Indiana Pacers’ loss to the New Orleans Pelicans on Friday, becoming the first bench player to have that many in less than 30 minutes since former All-Star Manu Ginóbili on March 1, 2013. The last player to do it before that was John Lucas all the way back in 1988.

McConnell only played 28 minutes, meaning he had an assist about every two minutes. He was also a team-best +13.

That was not McConnell’s career-high in assists, though. He once had 17 assists in a game during the 2016-17 season, but he was a starter for the Sixers that night.

This season, McConnell is averaging a career-high 6.7 assists per game, along with 4.8 points, 3.1 rebounds, 1.8 steals and just 1.9 turnovers in 22.1 minutes. He is in the second year of a two-year, $7 million contract with the Pacers, who are in fifth place in the Eastern Conference.

Here are the highlights of McConnell’s big game: