There might not be a greater point of emphasis in today's NBA statistics than efficiency.
Samuel Dalembert is the 1st player in NBA history to get 35 pts & 12 rebs in 27 min or less.— chris palmer (@ESPNChrisPalmer) February 6, 2013
Trust me, the stat line is worth a second look. If anything, it certainly warrants future consideration for affording him more than the 15.3 minutes he had been averaging heading into the contest.
While his per-36 minute averages have been impressive (13.3 points and 11.8 rebounds, a career-best 56.4 field-goal percentage), this was unlike anything he'd shown during his first season with the franchise. Prior to his 35-point explosion, his season-high effort was a 15-point effort on Nov. 17. And his previous career high was 27 points in March of 2011 while with the Sacramento Kings.
What made this game any different from his first 26 games this season?
According to the big man, the answer was quite simple (via the Milwaukee Bucks' official Twitter account):
“I was feeling it.” - Samuel Dalembert on his 35 points and 12 rebounds in 27 minutes tonight #MILvDEN— Milwaukee Bucks (@Bucks) February 6, 2013
What really pushes the numbers into unbelievable territory, though, is the fact that he actually found 21 field-goal attempts (making 17) in those 27 minutes. And he did so with the shot-happy backcourt duo of Monta Ellis and Brandon Jennings logging a combined 82 minutes.
Of course, playing alongside those guards might have contributed to the Bucks' (25-22) unfortunate outcome. Michael Lee of The Washington Post:
Sam Dalembert giveth. Monta Ellis & Brandon Jennings giveth away.— Michael Lee (@MrMichaelLee) February 6, 2013
Dalembert did not attempt a shot in the game's final six minutes.
Ty Lawson and Danilo Gallinari each poured in 22 points for the Nuggets (31-18), and Corey Brewer added 20.