Woah. 35 points total, 23 points in the 4th quarter, and possibly the solution to the Thunder's needed bench scorer. That's how I am describing Reggie Jackson today.
Yesterday, the Thunder were facing the Pistons. They were down by 10 with 6 and a half minutes to go. Then Reggie Jackson went Vinnie Johnson on the Pistons.
Jackson stepped up hit a three, made a mid-range, made another three, made a third three, made another mid-range, made the go-ahead lay up, made another dunk. Basically, one person went on a 17-2 run.
He then made the game clinching set of free throws at the end of the game. Wow. When I was watching, all he reminded me of was one person: James Harden. Harden is someone who can score in a flash, and can dominate a game with his scoring.
After watching him make two game clinching free throws, he inspired me to write this article. The Thunder are coming off of a disappointing second round exit after they traded James Harden. Well, over the off-season the Thunder thought they had everything worked out since they had Kevin Martin. However, a couple weeks ago, Kevin Martin left OKC for the Minnesota Timberwolves.
Now, they are back in the same situation. Should they take a chance and use a current bench player, use the draft, or trade or pick up another player/free agent? By the looks of it, the Thunder might have their answer from their bench player, Reggie Jackson.
Like I said before, Jackson was amazing last night, and looks like he could be the next James Harden. In college, he was Boston College's main scorer, when he averaged 18 PPG, shot 42% from 3, and 50% from the field. In the NBA D-League he averaged 26 PPG, 7 TRB per game, and 8 APG. Obviously, he performed well in the minors, but the real question was: Can he do it in the NBA? Finally, we got a glimpse of him when Russell Westbrook went down in the playoffs last year.
Jackson played against a possible future great, Jeremy Lin, and current star and great defense man, Mike Conley. Against the two, he averaged 15 PPG, 4 APG, and shot 48% from the field. Those number are almost identical to James Harden's numbers in 2012 with OKC (17 PPG, 4 APG, 49% from the field). If Harden did it, so can Reggie Jackson.
If I was in OKC's front office, I would take a chance with Reggie Jackson being the 3rd scorer for the Thunder.