The Brooklyn Nets won three of four games this past week, and Jerry Stackhouse played a large role in two of the wins. As one veteran signing after another by the New York Knicks was met with slight incredulousness (Jason Kidd? Didn't he just get back from a shuffleboard tournament down in Del Boca Vista? Rasheed Wallace? Didn't he used to play for the Spirits of St. Louis with Marvin "Bad News" Barnes and Maurice Lucas? Marcus Camby? Wasn't he hauling in Bob Cousy's rebounds in the nascent years of the NBA? Kurt Thomas? Is he still alive?), the Nets brought in a grizzled veteran of their own, in Stackhouse, and he's giving them unexpected production off the bench.
In the Battle of New York last Monday, Stackhouse came up big for the Nets, draining four three-pointers, including the tiebreaker in overtime, and scoring 14 points. He added a rebound and an assist and was a +13 in 22:13 minutes off the bench. He did it all over again two nights later in the win over Boston, nailing five of six behind the three-point line, while scoring 17 points. He also chipped in with three steals, along with an assist and a rebound, and again played 22-plus minutes, this time having to cover for the ejections of Kris Humphries and Gerald Wallace (and speaking of the Celtics game, how cool was Joe Johnson's Marques Haynes-like dribbling that made Paul Pierce resemble a member of the Washington Generals?). Stackhouse sat out Friday's win over the Orlando Magic, but scored 11 points in Saturday's loss to the Miami Heat.
The 38-year-old swingman was supposed to be a mentor/player-coach with not much of an emphasis on the "player" part of that title, but instead he's contributing productive minutes off the bench (16:33 per game), while averaging 7.3 points and hitting threes at a 46.9% clip. All that makes Jerry Stackhouse the Unsung Hero of the Week.