Wednesday, 24 August 2011
SETTING A NEW PACE
'Miller Time' makes way for a Ray of light.
By Tim David Harvey
Swish, swish, swish! This year saw Reggie Miller doing the talking, while someone else was doing the playing. Reggie stepped into the Spike Lee role as Ray Allen was on Miller time. OK, so it wasn't as dramatic as it sounds, but just like Mars Blackmon and Michael Jordan, all Reggie could do was watch, hug and congratulate as Ray Allen beat his all time 3 point leading record. There was nothing he or nobody could do about it and there won't be for a long time. Nobody can touch or new 3 ball man Ray Allen. SWISH! Noooobody!
You see Reggie took the bullets out his dead-eye, assassins gun a long time ago and despite a few inklings to pull an M.J., Miller didn't want to tug a hamstring two, so retired he stayed. Nowadays Reggie is a commentator and that's exactly what he was doing when he and his ESPN team watched Boston Celtic, Ray Allen nail bucket after bucket as he kept raining on Millers all-time three pointers made record this season back. DAMN! Now that's got to hurt. Years ago they where talking about how Reggie was a better three-point shooter then Bird. Now that's all flying away as when it's all said and done, the best three title now belongs to a member of Boston's big-three.
Still it was nothing put pride and joy as Reggie commentated and real talked about Ray and his legacy. As the torch is being passed at least he can be rest assured that someone is keeping the shooters touch burning pure. Besides, from New York City to the pages of SLAM, Reggie always relished the villain role. Now what better a hero to overcome the villain then our saviour, Jesus Shuttlesworth? Spike Lee couldn't write it any better. Ray Allen's got game and he's got Reggie. His 2,612career three's and counting have torched Millers incredible 2,560. Now sure Jason Kidd's is in third place on the all time made list with 1,795, but his bronze shot is almost a thou below Ray's. Plus Jason? Your kidding right. Solid, yep, but pure? This aint child's play. Ray passed Reggie's high, three point bar like law school as the books were re-wrote. Still one question remains however, which player is the better shooter? Is number 34 really one better then number 33?
Technically speaking yes...technically speaking that is. Both shots of course are historically pure, but there's something so fluid and pure about Allen's rays. From the hand and eye, plus body coordination and positioning, to the range of motion. Purity is this shooters devotion. It almost looks rigid, but it's relaxed. Honed after years of practicing at home. Like an EA video game before all that real DNA technology, but this is live in living colour. You almost expect every shot to go in, Jesus even shows those courtside miracles pre-game by turning sat down shots on the pine to water. Sure Reggie's flick of the wrist shot worked so well ESPN made a movie out of it, but Allen's just looks a bit better, and is looking even better by the game and the record breaking.
Statistically speaking Allen edges Miller two. Obviously Ray has shot down the greatest figure, but right now his stats across the board stack up better too. Allen (6,554) has taken less shots to get to this milestone point than Reggie did in his career (6,486) but obviously Reggie has played more then Ray and surely if Miller came back he could make even more three's with his time. Still at this point Allen's .399 percentile marginally passes Reggie's,.395. This is not a test. The baton truly has been passed, from one legend to another.
Still, (and this isn't taking anything away from Ray) there was just something about Reggie Miller. You have to have love for someone who everybody hated. The bad guys are normally the ones you root for more in drama, whether fictionalised or televised. Seriously, who do you prefer? Batman or the Joker? Reggie played his cards right two, playing the bad guy to a tee like Tiger, just with love for the game. Now Ray Allen is a clutch king, who can shoot over anything, including prison walls, just ask Denzel, but compared to Reggie's clutch, forget about it. There's nothing between them, not even 8.9 seconds, right Spike? I'm sorry Spike who? Reggie had that, it's my game, killer instinct like only two others in history. Those being these two guys you may have heard about, Kobe and M.J.
The difference between Miller and the two greatest of all time was that Reggie was more adept from three, as he routinely dropped F-bombs from behind the arc, two by two like Noah, three by three like M.J and Kobe trophies. Sure there was no ring, but their where plenty of classic, gold, 'Where Amazing Happens' moments that if the playoffs and conferences where different would have been perfect ends to NBA Finals. Sure Ray's threes impressed the hell out of people, but Reggie's scared the s*** out of folk. Just ask Spike Lee, Madison Square Garden and the city of New York. Allen may hold all sorts of three point records from the season (269) to the finals (8) but Reggie holds the heart of New York basketball in his merciless grip, right to the core of their rotten 90's playoff runs.
Sure, now where going further beyond the arc to Robert Horry territory, because that still isn't a determinant for how pure these guys three point shots are in comparison. It's merely just a hint. With this comparison where going into who is the better player range, mind over mechanics, which has only a little to do with the purity of the shot and more to do with everything else that comes later. As for the shooting however, critics, fans, bloggers and anyone else alike could take shots all day. The fact remains that both guys sniper shots (that are actually real, taken and made) where and are as pure as straight vodka with no chaser. Still, as Ray downs Reggie's milestone, another thing is as clear as Smirnoff. Ray has indeed shot down Reggie and he's got plenty more bullets in his gun for his next season and legacy. The gunslinger is about to draw again. Swish, swish, SWISH!