Andre Iguodala's numbers are rarely gaudy. He's never averaged 20 points per game in his career, topping out at 19.9 for the Philadelphia 76ers back in 2007-08, and he hardly sniffs that number now that he plays a drastically different role as a complementary perimeter player on the Golden State Warriors — he's topped 20 points just three times this season, and is averaging just 9.3 points in a career-low 32.4 minutes per game. Every now and again, though, the 30-year-old defensive ace reminds us that he's more than capable of using his combination of athleticism and coordination to do special things on the offensive end, too — his sick behind-the-back pass to David Lee, his soaring putback dunk against the Dalals Mavericks and, perhaps most notably, the slick ball-handling he showed off during one brief drive against the New Orleans Pelicans.
Iguodala's handles rushed back to the forefront during Thursday night's matchup with the Denver Nuggets, during which for some reason or another — perhaps he was angry because it was a nationally televised affair? — Andre decided to do something very mean to young Denver defender Quincy Miller:
After picking up a loose ball following a Stephen Curry steal, Iguodala dribbled ahead of his teammates into the open court, looking to push the tempo despite seeing four powder-blue Nuggets jerseys ahead of him. Iguodala approached the nearest bit of blue fabric, the one worn by Miller, and went behind his back from left to right to avoid the 6-foot-10 sophomore's long reach. As soon as Miller opened his stance to drop step and attempt to poke the ball loose from Iguodala's right hand, the veteran pulled the ball low to the floor and crossed it back over to his left, sending Miller slipping to the deck at the 3-point arc.
"That's just not right, and it's not fair," said TNT color commentator Reggie Miller, and for once, I agreed with him.
Judging by the reaction of the Warriors bench — especially noted emoter Jordan Crawford — the moment was as remarkable in person as it was in high-def. (Credit goes, as always, to the Oracle Arena crowd, which rose up in one gigantic "OHHHHHHHHH" at just the right time.) And judging by the reactions of some NBA players watching at home, we're guessing Quincy might have a hard time living this one down:
It even briefly led to that most infamous of Internet jokes: the vandalism of one's Wikipedia page.
We're guessing that Miller will be hearing about his slip-and-slide from his teammates for a little while, but you've got to tip your cap to him for trying to D up; there but for the grace of God go those of us who haven't had to check 6-foot-8 swingmen with point guard handles in transition.
Now, Andre, if you could do us a favor — finish the next one with a bucket, will you? Sure, you got to the line and made your free throws, but that's a perfunctory period at the end of a play that deserved an exclamation point.
As it turned out, Miller would get the last laugh, with his Nuggets pulling off a thrilling 100-99 win thanks to a game-winning last-second shot by power forward Kenneth Faried. After finishing off his otherwise-relatively-quiet six-point, two-rebound, one-assist, one-steal performance, Miller checked his Twitter, saw that he was being crushed, and responded in good humor:
Well done, Quincy. Now go ice up those ankles.
Video via @cjzero.
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- Sports & Recreation
- Andre Iguodala
- Golden State Warriors
- Quincy Miller
- Reggie Miller
- Denver Nuggets