After a 22-year NBA career across several NBA franchises, Jamal Crawford has decided to hang up his sneakers and retire from the NBA. He was one of the few players that proved that coming off the bench is not a demotion by the coach. Along with Manu Ginobili and Lou Williams, they were the three names that made the Sixth Man award as a prestigious honor that role players would vie for every single season.
Crawford was a scoring machine that could easily tally over 20 points per game despite playing less than the starters. The longevity of Crawford is another admirable trait for the youngsters to emulate as his game did not go on a sudden decline as he was still a reliable role player with the Phoenix Suns in the 2018-19 season which was his last full season in the NBA. In the illustrious career of Crawford, there are some moments that stood out from the fan’s perspective.
51 points with the Suns
On the final game of Dirk Nowtizki’s legendary NBA career, Jamal Crawford shocked the NBA world and became the oldest player in NBA History to score 50 or more points in a single game. At 39 years old and 20 days, Crawford was raining buckets on the Mavericks on that night as he is also the first player in history to score 50 or more points for four different franchises.
The Mavericks ended up winning the match, but Crawford’s name remains on the record books for this April 9, 2019 match. It may have been surprising for the Suns to even utilize Crawford on the final game of the season as it was a non-bearing game, but coach Igor Koskov gave him the rare chance of performing in the latter part of a regular season, and he delivered excellently.
Receiving third Sixth Man in 2016
As one of the key cogs of the Lob City era with the Los Angeles Clippers, Crawford claimed two Sixth Man of the Year awards with the Clippers. The household names were the big three of Chris Paul, Blake Griffin, and DeAndre Jordan, but Crawford was a vital consistent contributor for Doc Rivers and the crew. His 2016 Sixth Man of the Year was the third of his career, and the oldest to win the prominent award at 36 years old.
Crawford ironically broke his own record at 34 years old, but his numbers did not dwindle a tad bit. One could argue that other facets of his games failed to adapt to the modern NBA, but his scoring prowess and killer mentality was never lacking for any of his stints. The second unit of the Clippers lacked that shot creator and scorer in their second unit and Crawford filled in that role. There is no doubt these are one of the tenures that would stick to Crawford, especially his two incredible Sixth Man of the Year awards.
Breaking 4-point play record in 2010
The combination of the handles and shooting of Crawford is one of the most gorgeous ones in recent memory. Those moves will stick to NBA fans for a long time, but one record that he broke 12 years ago is one of the ones that would be insurmountable to break for any NBA player. On February 4, 2010 he eclipsed the 23 completed four-points of Reggie Miller in his spectacular NBA career.
Before retiring, Crawford increased that total to 54 completed ones which is 18 more than second-place James Harden. Crawford may not be inducted to the Hall of Fame or even a superstar in a championship team, but his four-point play conversions will cement himself in the NBA record books. Most shooters convert better when they are open, but Crawford is known to be a prolific shooter even if defenders are on his grill as he would elevate over them despite the close proximity.
Even if Crawford was not part of the favorite team of any fanatic, it is a guarantee that they are intrigued and entertained when he steps on the floor every night. The iconic quick behind the back and pull-up jumper would shock defenders along with his ability to go on long scoring spurts like he was the best player on the floor.
There is no one like Jamal Crawford, and everyone will miss him donning a NBA jersey.