Friday, May 20, 2005

So long, Reggie 

He scored 27 points in his final game. Rather impressive. Too bad it wasn't a win. I didn't watch the game (at work) and was spouting elsewhere that few would (I haven't seen the ratings, but can only assume I was right -- even with ABC carrying the game). Reggie Miller's retirement, to me, signals a sort of end of an era not only regarding Reggie, but in the broader scope of NBA stars. I'm always going to link that guy with Jordan, Ewing, Olajuwon, Barkley, Robinson, Malone, etc. - the NBA vanguard up through the late 90s. I respect Reggie Miller a lot. I think he was a terrific shooter and was absolutley incredible at moving without the ball to free himself for a shot. Few players can claim to be as prolific from 3 point land or as clutch as he was. He gets many many bonus points from me for playing his entire 18 year career in Indiana. Loyalty is severely underrated. Now the question becomes: Is he a hall of famer? I'd have to say no. The guy was a perrenial all star during his heyday, but never cracked the 1st or 2nd team All NBA. If it wasn't for Michael Jordan, that might not have been the case, but I've never thought of Reggie as being one of the top two or three swingmen in the league. Ever. Only one finals appearance (again, no thanks to MJ). Lacked defense in his game. If there is any question of whether a player should be in the hall of fame, then there is no question that they shouldn't. Reggie just barely misses the cut in my book. Though his legacy will live on for some time. I don't think I'll ever forget him hitting three threes in -- what was it? Ten seconds against the Knicks in the playoffs in '95 and then barking at Spike Lee who was sitting courtside. Great stuff. For the record, that '98 Pacers squad was incredible. They really should have beat the Bulls that year. Damn.

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