Andre Miller Drops 52, Shrugs
So when he dropped 52 points on the Mavericks -- at least 10 of those in the closing minutes of regulation and in overtime on all-world defender Shawn Marion -- it was a big deal. A real WTF moment. To everyone ... except Miller.
Jason Quick of The Oregonian heard from Miller's teammates just how little the fitty-plus performance changed Dre's M.O. Martell Webster said Miller walked into the locker room after the finish as if nothing had ever happened. LaMarcus Aldridge said Miller was stoked for the win -- which came almost entirely because of Miller -- but had no time to celebrate the personal achievement.
And this is Miller, basically. When things weren't going well between Dre and coach Nate McMillan earlier this season, Miller's quiet confidence was seen as disruptive aloofness, as if the reserved and perturbed Miller upset the team's once marvelous chemistry. Now? It's egoless contentment, and no doubt Miller would be fine with 10 FGAs in the next game. Amazing how circumstances change perception.
In Quick's story, Aldridge pointed out how rare a 50-point game without a multitude of three-pointers seems. (Miller took and hit one three.) That's not entirely the case -- since the 1986-87 season, players have dropped 50+ with zero or one made three some 64 times. It is becoming more rare as threes become a bigger part of the game -- Carmelo Anthony pulled it off earlier this season against the Knicks, but it didn't happen at all last season and only once in 2007-08 (Allen Iverson dropped 51 on the Lakers with no threes). That Miller was able to get 50 without the help of the three-ball or copious amounts of free throws (he had eight) is stunning, though.