After J.J. Barea's stellar night, the term "out of nowhere" comes to mind. It's not entirely accurate, though.
Barea was the Colonial Athletic Association Player of the Year in his senior year at Northeastern and is touted as the most exciting player ever to don a Husky uniform. His senior year, he scored 32 on Old Dominion, had 14 assists against Central Connecticut and shot an astonishing 11-14 three pointers against Rider University. He came close to a triple double that season during his first game in which he had 22 points, 8 rebounds and 9 assists against Brown University.
Given, he wasn't playing against world-class competition, but averaging 21 points and 6.3 assists over a four-year college career at a Div. I school is still nothing to shake a stick at.
His successes in the D-League last year are also well documented. When the Mavs sent him down to the Fort Worth Flyers for eight games, he responded by averaging 27.3 points, 7.8 assists and 5 rebounds. He scored 41 in one game and 43 in another, a D-League high for the season. When he was done slashing the lane among the pogo sticks in the D-League, the Mavs brought him back up to the big leagues, presumably to help on the practice squad and play spot minutes.
Given, tonight was one game against a truly stinky Kings team, but he has proven in the past that whatever level of competition he has faced, he steps up and plays much bigger than his slight frame.
Maybe Randy Galloway was onto something with his JJ prognostication a few weeks ago.
-Scooter Hendon, Hoops Nerd