There are two things that sports writers love to do. One is make lists. The second is to compare athletes to players of years gone by. Marcus Keene reminds me of former Detroit Piston Vinnie “The Microwave” Johnson. For those of you that don’t remember him, he was a key component of the Pistons championship teams of 1989 and 1990. He would come in off the bench and score points in bunches, seemingly whenever the Pistons needed him to. Considering that he was a bench player for them, and only averaged 12 points a game on his career, it’s very telling that the Pistons retired his number.
It’s been my thinking for a while now that Marcus Keene could fill a similar role in the NBA. The Washington Wizards saw something in him, too, since they signed him up for summer ball. These two tweets that I saw today helped solidify my opinion.
5-9 Marcus Keene had a dope crossover in last night's Summer League game. pic.twitter.com/rqbPIT34oc— CSN Wizards (@CSNWizards) July 12, 2017
While he has only scored a combined 15 points in the two games, it’s how he is scoring them that have me, and others, taking notice. He is proving, at least to me, that it wasn’t a fluke that he averaged 30 points a game last year for the Central Michigan Chippewas.
The ability to score as quickly as he can, in the variety of ways that he can, are a commodity. The guy also has a personality, and is only 5’9. That makes him an easy guy to root for. That’s also a commodity in the world of professional sports.
I am not sure he is going to stick on with the guard heavy Wizards. It’s obvious that he can make a living playing basketball, and it’s my belief that he can do so at the NBA level. Plays like those two will make others believe, too.