It's been a pretty magical run for Milwaukee's Brandon Jennings so far, and tonight it continued, as he became the youngest player in NBA history to score 50 points, netting 55 in a high scoring win over the Warriors.
Just a few weeks ago, after he'd gotten off to a surprising start in his first few games, we worried that people would ignore Brandon Jennings, the individual, and instead focus on what his triumph might mean for the sport. Because he skipped college and went to Europe, a lot of people see him as a guinea pig of sorts--should he succeed, it could have implications for scores of other basketball phenoms.
But those implications for the superstars of tomorrow shouldn't distract us from a guy that's already pretty amazing. Should we get caught up in a debate about Europe vs. College Basketball, we run the risk of missing out on one of the best young talents in the world in Jennings, and someone with as compelling a backstory as any pro athlete you'll find.
And lucky for us, Brandon Jennings is making it pretty difficult to ignore him. On Friday, I wrote this:
I’m going to try really hard not to talk about Brandon Jennings this week. But… Really. Please just start watching him play. Wednesday night he battled one of the better point guards in the league—and a strong, mentally tough player that’d theoretically be the perfect foil for him—and absolutely outclassed Chauncey Billups. Jennings had 32 points, 9 assists, and carried the Bucks in the fourth. So, what’s left for Jennings?
Can he make the All-Star game? Can Milwaukee make the playoffs? Can he average 20-10 as a rookie?
I forgot to add, "Can he become the youngest player in NBA history to score 50 points?" Or, "can he score 29 points (29!) in one quarter?" Indeed, the following tweet says pretty much all you need to know about Brandon Jennings' Saturday night in Milwaukee. From Kevin Pelton at Basketball Prospectus: