NBA fans were treated to one of the most explosive and surprising performances of the 2013-14 season a couple of weeks back, when Phoenix Suns shooting guard Gerald Green briefly entered another, higher plane of existence, scoring 25 points in the third quarter alone.
The former Boston Celtics first-round pick, who was shipped out from Boston (whoa-oh-oh) to join the Minnesota Timberwolves as part of the Kevin Garnett trade, redirected to the Houston Rockets, washed out with both the Rockets and Dallas Mavericks, headed overseas for two seasons and scrapped his way back to the big show through the D-League and making good on short-term deals with the New Jersey Nets and Indiana Pacers — went shot for shot with the likes of Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook en route to a career-high 41 points to propel the Suns to a big win over the Oklahoma City Thunder. For a few minutes there, all of the 6-foot-8 swingman's estimable talents seemed to line up just right; it was like he'd figured out the cheat code to NBA dominance or something.
Or, better yet, as the Suns' video production team re-imagined it: It was like he was on fire.
I'm not totally sure about those rankings — I get that it's a team-promo deal, but giving the 28-year-old an above-average rating in passing seems chuckle-worthy, and, with all due respect to this game-winner, a 9 in clutch seems awful generous — but it's just about perfect to turn an all-3-pointers-and-dunks player like Green into an "NBA Jam" character. This is form meeting function, and a fitting tribute to the best performance (he went 6 for 7 on 3-pointers in that third quarter) of Green's resurgent 2013-14 season in the desert for the better-than-anyone-expected Suns. We eagerly await a full "NBA Jam: Tournament Edition" play-through that pairs Green with Bill Clinton for maximum enjoyment.
Hat-tip to Ben York of Suns.com.
- - - - - - -