After last season, popular Bulls benchwarmer Brian Scalabrine (the White Mamba) retired as an 11-year NBA vet. He finished with a career line of 3.1 points and two boards per game, and a reputation as a human victory cigar, excellent teammate, and pro basketball survivor. The Bulls still wanted him around, offering him a job as an assistant coach, but he decided to return to Boston, where he spent five years with the Celtics, for a “trial run” as a broadcaster.
Now footloose and fancy free, Salabrine put his rep to the test, giving a few lucky fans the chance to see what it’s like playing pickup with a pro benchwarmer. His first opponent was a fellow benchwarmer at a lower level, but one with a fine pedigree—Syracuse, under Jim Boeheim. Scalabrine gave up three buckets, then proceeded to torch all comers, going 4-0 with a combined score of 44-6. He’s not even that much quicker than the scrubs selected to take him on, but his movements are just so much more precise, and his instincts so much more refined.