Snubbed Despite Putting Up Michael Jordan-Numbers, Tyrese Haliburton Has Last Laugh Against Celtics Superstar

Published 12/04/2023, 11:55 PM EST

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NBA awards often tend to bring a lot of controversy. The two most common criteria for these selections are the statistics and their impact on winning. However, the weight for each criterion remains uncertain. For Tyrese Haliburton, the winning portion of the argument might have held him back. Otherwise, equaling a Michael Jordan performance should have made him the frontrunner for the Player of the Month Award in November. Instead, he finds himself in the back seat to Jayson Tatum.

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Both players had exceptional performances in November. From a statistical standpoint, there was little to separate them except passing. However, Hali’s advantage in that category could find its match in the defensive excellence of Tatum.

But, is the defense that big of a gap to liquidate a feat accomplished just thrice in NBA history? For the month, Haliburton’s average read like a video game. 28.6pts/3.2reb/11.7asts on insane efficiency. His shooting splits read: 53/47/88. In all of NBA history, just 2 names have done what Tyrese did before. They just happen to be the 2 primary candidates for the NBA GOAT debate. Michael Jordan and LeBron James.

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But, the one other place that Jayson and Hali do have a sizeable gap is in the win column. While the Indiana Pacers stuttered to a 7-7 record for the month, promoting the instantly iconic, “I’m tired of losing” reaction from their superstar, the Celtics were cruising. As they have all year, Boston ran the table with a 14-4 record. That victory margin became the ultimate decider for the award race and Tatum finds himself the victor.

Watch This Story: Revealed: Jayson Tatum’s Only Probable Weakness

However, there is a different trophy that the Pacers superstar could have his sights on.

Tyrese Haliburton is HIM

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The In-Season Tournament had a lot of detractors upon its announcement. However, throughout the season, most players and fans alike have become fans of the event. Due to the intensely excellent basketball, everyone is on board with the idea. But no one has been as impressive as Tyrese Haliburton.

USA Today via Reuters

The former Sacramento Kings guard has been on a tear leading the team to a 4-0 record en route to the Quarter Finals. But, meeting Tatum there was a welcome sight for revenge. And revenge, Rese did get. Even though the game was closely contested for most of the night, it was Haliburton who powered Indy home.

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Thanks to a heroic 4-point play with barely 2 minutes on the clock, Hali gave the Pacers a 109-105 lead. From there, they were able to hold on to the lead and secure a victory. Revenge never tasted so good.

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Written by:

Priyanshu

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My earliest memories of a connection to basketball was through its popularity in my school. Eventually, that gave way to a genuine passion for the sport and the rest, is history. Whether it be gameplay, the tactics, the narratives, or the sheer art on display, the game speaks to me in a way few other things can.
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Edited by:

Pragya Vashisth

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