THE NBA UNSUNG
“…to die unsung would really bring you down…“–Helmet, “Unsung”
That was quite a jam back in the day. ESPN’s Ric Bucher has his annual “All-Quasar” team ready for your perusal. It’s a look at those players who are overlooked and underappreciated. Or as Helmet told us, “Unsung”. Here’s my list of the NBA Unsung:
- Wally Szcerbiak. He just shoots lights out. Career 50% FG, 40% 3FG and 86% FT. Deserves more props.
- Gerald Wallace. He hasn’t played since January because of a bum knee, but the 23 year-old was making incredible strides this season. Before the injury he was averaging 14.4 PPG on 54% shooting, 7.o RPG, 2.44 SPG and 2.19 BPG.
- Mike Miller & Shane Battier. 2 high picks combine to make an awesome SF tandem for the Grizzlies. Both players were much heralded coming out of school. Battier was the leader of the Dukies that Vitale loved so much he had an aortic dissection on one occasion when Battier took one of his NCAA record 2,872 charges. Miller was the face of Florida basketball when they made their run at the Final Four. Miller was picked 5th in 2000 and Battier 6th in 2001. They have similar numbers. Battier is much like he was at Duke. Not a prolific scorer, but a good defender and high percentage shooter. Miller is instant offense of the bench averaging 13.1 per game shooting 40% from beyond the arc.
- Antonio McDyess. Back in the 2000-01 season, McDyess was an explosive, jump out of the gym type player who was as effective as he was exciting to watch. He averaged 20 & 12 that year, all the while blocking shots, running the floor like a guard and throwing down some thunderous dunks. Befallen by injuries he has never been the same player. But last year he found a new niche–coming off the bench for the Pistons. He averaged almost 10 & 4 and shot over 50%. He’s doing much of the same this year. It must be nice to have a player like that come off the bench for you.
Others making the list: Mo Pete, Othella Harrington, Chris Kaman and Hedo Turkoglu.