They say Eddie House can turn a light switch off—and before the lights go out, catch and release his jumpshot.
Though he may have the quickest release in the league, House struggled last year as a point guard.
House is only 6'0" tall, but I don't think anybody other than his mother would say that ball-handling is one of his strong suits. In fact, in a recent SI player's poll, House was determined the sixth worst ball-handler in the NBA. And last year he was a point guard!
Out of the 26 players who received multiple votes in the poll, House was the only guard, and the only players who received more votes than he did were centers.
While House could still barely bring the ball upcourt against my grandmother's full-court press, he found a way to become an invaluable sixth man for the Celtics. In training camp, Doc commented that he thought Eddie performed the best and came into camp the most improved. Doc and Eddie found out a way to capitalize on Eddie's strengths and foregoing some of his weaknesses by moving Eddie off the ball.
Eddie didn't truly begin to prosper, though, until the Stephon Marbury signing. Before Starbury was signed, Eddie still had to play some backup point guard minutes, but, once Marbury came aboard, Eddie was free to do what he does best—roaming the perimeter to find a sliver of space between him and his defender so he can release his world-class jump-shot.
For the season, House used his ultra-quick release to shoot a career-high 340 three-pointers this season, connecting on a career high 151. On the last day of the season, with Danny Ainge's single-season Celtics three-point record of 44.3 percent in his sights, Eddie nailed five three-pointers in the fourth quarter to barely eclipse Ainge's mark.
Eddie then had one huge game in the Orlando Magic series, scoring a career-high 31 points. After getting slapped in the back of the head in that game by Rafer Alston, Eddie talked a little trash, saying, "That's what happens when you start bustin' somebody's ass."
Celtics diehards like myself know Eddie as much for his bravado and trash-talking as we do for his deadly outside stroke. We've all seen Eddie hit a three and bark right in his defender's face.
Personally, I love it when my team talks a little junk. I love the confidence and emotion it reveals, and I couldn't be happier whenever Eddie House woofs at the opposing team's bench after a three.
Next year, Eddie may not be with the Celtics; he has a player option for next year. Count me as someone who hopes Eddie likes his position on the Celtics enough to stick around. They could certainly use his barrage of threes and terrific energy next season.
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