Culture of Hoops

Reggie Miller And His Last NBA Game

Reggie Miller, an 18-year NBA veteran who played his entire career with the Indiana Pacers, a rarity in today’s sports world, will be inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame on Friday, September 7th. It could be argued that Miller should have been enshrined once he was eligible last year, especially if you’re like former teammate, Mark Jackson with his opinion that Miller is third-best shooting guard of all-time. But, regardless, one of the most hated NBA villains to ever take the court received his due respect.

Of course, Reggie Miller was only a villain to opposing NBA teams. In Indiana, Miller was revered as a basketball demigod, which says a lot being that it’s Indiana with all of its rich hoops tradition and undeniable love of the sport. The below video will display the love of Reggie when he played his final NBA game at home versus the defending NBA champion Detriot Pistons in the 2005 Eastern Conference semifinals:

As a Knicks fan growing up, I obviously hated Miller – eight points, nine seconds, the choke sign, and most annoying of all, Miller’s relishing of the spotlight as the most hated man in Madison Square Garden whenever his Pacers came to visit. Reggie Miller wasn’t only being braggodicious, but he thrived at The Mecca, backing up the smack he talked.

You couldn’t hate on that. You had to respect it. And, if you actually cheered for Reggie Miller, you had to love it.

(H/T to Reddit/NBA)

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