Mirza Teletovic found the fountain of threes.
With the Brooklyn Nets struggling to score in the first quarter, they looked to Teletovic to carry them in the second, and man, did he carry: Teletovic hit his first six three-pointers and shot 9-11 from the field in the quarter, finishing with 24 points. His only miss from beyond the arc was a half-court heave at the half-time buzzer.
The 24 points is a career-high for Teletovic, both in a game and a quarter.
It wasn’t so much the fact that he hit six threes — which that alone, wow — it was the progressive difficulty that came with the shots: Teletovic started heat-checking for fun, running loose on the wings, catching the ball on the run, and firing up off-balance threes. The last one was his magnum opus: a leaning three-pointer in Dirk Nowitzki’s face that sent the crowd into a frenzy.
Three months ago, Teletovic, struggling with a lack of playing time and rhythm, told The Brooklyn Game in an interview that he wasn’t sure he had a role with the Nets at all. But in the NBA, things can change in an instant; opportunities can develop, and one solid performance can give you something to build on.
After the game, Teletovic simultaneously joked about his own reputation while giving his teammates credit for his performance. “There’s a lot of open space when you have so many shooters,” Teletovic said about his teammates. “With Joe standing in one corner, Paul Pierce standing in another corner, ‘okay, let’s leave this guy from Europe, maybe he won’t make it.'”