He is no Kareem Abdul Jabbar in career-high points or Michael Jordan in best game showmanship but Reggie Miller is one NBA player I respect. Sure, I did label him as a velociraptor look-a-like when I was rooting for LA Lakers to win the 2000 NBA Finals (with the Bryant-O'Neal duo, who wasn't?), but then he was the only scorer from the opposing team to watch out for.

I respect the guy for a number of reasons. I'll only name a couple, remarkable ones at best. First, he has an underdog character. I like the underdogs — simple and modest, no pretentions, nothing ostentatious in getting things done and eventually win good-natured girls in the end. And Reggie Miller's one of them. He was born with a deformity (I think it was his hip or leg) and had to wear leg braces until the age of 4. He pushed himself hard to make up for a slow and painful start and enabled his way through college at UCLA (as varsity, he was second in total score points next to Kareem's record).

Two, he is loyal. He hasn't changed jerseys as most players do since Indiana picked him back in '87. He was 11th draft pick overall with Bull's Scottie Pippen in 5th and Spur's David Robinson in 1st spots. Not bad. I mean, he's no Lebron James for a rookie but since then, he has played for the Pacers breaking Larry Bird's three point record as a rookie in the first season and averaged 24 points in the second. Three years after, he joined the NBA All Stars (beat that!). Although, yeah, Indiana never won an NBA crown, Reggie led the team to its first ever playoff series back in 1994. Now at age 39, his team mates share the same reverence to his leadership and love for the game, referring to him as "Uncle Reggie" (awwww!).

I'm not really a Reggie Miller fan but I like him, nonetheless. I guess he got my attention when he scored 25 points in one quarter against the Knicks in 1994 (or was it '95?). Either the roster of Pacers' players were really lame or Reggie Miller was just that driven. Since then, he was a player to watch out for in my book. In fact, I dread the times when "Miller Time" was on (especially against the Bulls in the '94 Eastern playoffs).

And today is not just a Miller Time but a Miller Day. Reggie hit the NBA league history books after scoring 25,000 career points, leading the Pacers past the Spurs. He joins 12 other players, including Kareem and Jordan, in the league's elite club. And his reaction to this recognition: "It's a nice accomplishment". Gee, how modest can the usual self-absorbed, cocky NBA players get?!?! Not like Reggie, for sure.

It won't be long until Reggie hangs his jersey for retirement — next season, when he turns 40, to be precise. Well, up until then, I suppose we'll see more of Miller Time!

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