It was only four months ago that Bennedict Mathurin and Dalen Terry were in Las Vegas teaming up to lead the Arizona Wildcats to a Pac-12 Tournament title.
Some 120 days and millions of dollars later, Mathurin and Terry are back in Las Vegas beginning their NBA careers for the Indiana Pacers and Chicago Bulls, respectively.
Both players took the floor with their new teams Friday and both walked out of Thomas & Mack Center with wins.
In the later of the two games, Mathurin scored 23 points in 20 minutes to guide the Pacers to a 96-84 win over the Charlotte Hornets. Mathurin also recorded four rebounds and one assist.
Former Arizona point guard Gabe York had four rebounds and four assists with no points in 16 minutes for the Pacers.
Mathurin, the 6th overall pick of the NBA Draft, showed why scouts thought so highly of his offensive potential coming out of Arizona. He scored eight points in the first five-and-a-half minutes.
Mathurin scored from all over the court, including three 3-pointers on six attempts.
What a start for Bennedict Mathurin— Action Network (@ActionNetworkHQ) July 8, 2022
He already has 8 points on the day. pic.twitter.com/bYx6sUmxSo
In the third quarter, former Oregon Ducks star Chris Duarte set Mathurin up for a pretty backcourt lob.
Chris Duarte off the backboard lob to Bennedict Mathurin: pic.twitter.com/ihDNuDeYJn— Tony East (@TEastNBA) July 8, 2022
Mathurin made an impressive drive to the hoop in the fourth quarter.
Benn Mathurin is up to 21 PTS in his #NBASummer debut ♨ pic.twitter.com/xLC6j9FP6p— NBA (@NBA) July 9, 2022
Benn Mathurin came to HOOP in his #NBASummer debut, dropping 23 pts and leading the @Pacers to the win!@BennMathurin: 23 PTS, 4 REB, 3 3PM pic.twitter.com/amn0jXWZdn— NBA (@NBA) July 9, 2022
Mathurin and the Pacers return to action Sunday when they take on the Sacramento Kings at 12 p.m. PT on ESPN.
In the first game of the day, Terry showed off his characteristic versatility, recording nine points, six assists and five rebounds in 31 minutes. Terry, the 18th overall pick in the draft, also had one block and six turnovers.
Touchdown throw by Dalen!@DalenTerry | @CarlikJones pic.twitter.com/qOWC5ykzJi— Chicago Bulls (@chicagobulls) July 8, 2022
Dalen Terry with the block on Jaden Hardy. He has been everywhere on the defensive side of the ball for the Bulls so far early on. pic.twitter.com/o5N8SxTPvv— Ari Koslow (@koslow_ari) July 8, 2022
Terry’s enthusiasm is one of his top calling cards as a young player, and it was on full display in his debut. After emphatically throwing down a breakaway dunk, he got called for a technical, probably for something he said.
Dalen Terry just got a technical foul for this…— The Wildcaster (@TheWildcaster) July 8, 2022
( ESPNU) pic.twitter.com/cBXNlQeizP
After the game, Terry fought off criticism that he wasn’t aggressive enough scoring the ball.
““I was playing basketball,” he said, per the Arizona Daily Star’s Justin Spears. “I’m a basketball player. The way I play, I don’t have to score 30 points to affect the game.”
.@DalenTerry was asked by longtime Bulls reporter and “Jordan Rules” author Sam Smith about why he wasn’t hunting shots in his NBA debut.— Justin Spears (@JustinESports) July 8, 2022
“I was playing basketball. … I’m a basketball player. The way I play, I don’t have to score 30 points to affect the game.” pic.twitter.com/ptpPkM93wt
Terry and the Bulls return to the court Sunday when they face the New York Knicks at 2 p.m. PT on ESPN2.