mirza teletovic

Mirza Teletovic is the real deal

Friday night, the Nets beat the Dallas Mavericks to extend their hot streak to start the new year to an NBA-best 9-1.

Brooklyn got a big boost off the bench from Mirza Teletovic, who scored 24 of his career-high 34 points in a wild second quarter, in which he scored 19 points on 7-of-7 shooting in his first six minutes of play.

Teletovic hadn’t scored more than 19 points in a game in his NBA career before Friday night, but the Bosnia and Herzegovina native was not going to be denied.

After a rough rookie season that saw him unable to earn his coaches’ trust, Mirza has been a pleasant surprise this season, and he’s rewarded Jason Kidd’s faith in him.

Teletovic spoke after the game about how he’s gotten more confident, and how he’s gotten the NBA game to slow down for him since the start of the season to now.

“It’s just [about] getting more time. Coach trusts me more, [he's] talking to me, explaining me stuff, giving me confidence. [It's about getting] more confidence. When I get more confidence it helps a lot.”

Jon Presser, Contributor

After initially getting a chance to play due to early-season injuries to other players, Teletovic has now become a fixture in the Nets’ rotation thanks to some impressive all-around play. Not just a spot-up three-point shooter, he’s shown that he can create his own shot as well. He’s played respectable defense, and he’s played with good energy, effort, and intensity, especially with his rebounding.

As he’s gotten more confident, his shooting has improved. He shot just 37.3% from the field and 38.2% from deep in 11 November games. In 13 December games, those numbers went up to 45.4% and 42.6%, respectively. So far in 10 January games, Teletovic is shooting a terrific 50.6% from the field and 47.5% from behind the arc.

Here are Mirza’s shot charts by month, which you can view at full-size with a click.

mirza november mirza decembermirza january

 

There’s no doubt in my mind that Mirza is a legitimate NBA contributor. He’s been steadily improving as the season’s gone on. It’s been fun to watch. Jason Kidd has given him the chance to play serious minutes, and Mirza has seized the opportunity.

6 comments
aca16
aca16

Nice to see some comments on this site.  MT3's second quarter last night was surreal.  But that beautiful pure shooter's touch seemed to demonstrate a glimpse of his true potential, rather than some aberrational evening.  With his increased playing time, I am starting to wonder just how good this guy could actually be.  Last night, watching a guy that big shooting light's out from that deep, I thought I was watching the old Dirk playing against the now OLD Dirk.  Most impressive, however, was his final shot, against his body banking it home with one hand, with all the pressure on the Nets to score and just over a minute left.  And lets not forget AK47s block on one end and then his running the length of the court to receive from DWill and touch pass it to Blatche for the finishing jam on the fast break.  That entire sequence was spectacular.  I remember back to the second game of the season when AK was on the floor and they beat up the Heat and what a difference maker he seemed to be, making all the little plays, the hustle plays.  Now that he is back and healthy, it is undeniable that they are such a better team.  DWill and AK really do seem to have a nice understanding of each other's game.  That second unit last night (DWill, AK, MT3, Blatche and Terry) looked far superior to the starting unit.  How nice is it, on a night when JJ gets into early foul trouble and doesn't have the touch, and Anderson and Livingston are playing like mere mortals, as opposed to the magic they have been bringing night in and night out, and you can go to the bench and trot out a second unit that is better than most team's first units.  Will be most interesting to see just how Coach Kidd picks his spots for all these guys going forward, but even without Brooke, they are a REALLY tough matchup at this point and, after hopefully winning their next two, on their way to the 3 spot in the East and a chance to make some serious noise in June.  My, what a difference a calendar year can make.  Looks like their team New Year's resolution to turn things around and upside down has gotten things right side up once and for all.  Let's Go Nets.


How about all of those whiny comments from Cuban about our owner.  I like Cuban, but give me a break.  Its nice to have an owner, absentee or not, who is willing to spend the money and who brought in good people who were not afraid to pull the triggers and make all the tough calls.  I repeat, LET'S GO NETS!!! 


And thanks so much to the bloggers on this site.  Comments or not, I know I am on this site multiple times a day.  Kudos to the great job all you guys are doing.

jaymanjay
jaymanjay

Mirza's increased productivity honestly just makes Lopez more and more expendable.  Whatever scoring and minimal rebounding you got from Lopez has been made up completely by the increased minutes of Mirza, Blatche, and AK47. 

Jon Presser
Jon Presser moderator

@aca16 First of all, thank you for the kind words. We work hard here on the site and we're glad to have fans coming here and reading our stuff. We know there are some excellent Nets blogs out there and we've yet to build up a community anywhere near as large, but we really appreciate the support. There's so much great Nets content online, and I read it all because there's a lot of great writers and great sites out there.


So true about the Cuban comments. I like Cuban too, but as long as Prokhorov is giving his team the resources they need to compete, I don't care if he's chilling on the moon. I'm a Mets fan too, and I would kill to have a guy like Prok running the Mets!


It's really been amazing watching Mirza's development these past few months, and it's exciting to think about how high his ceiling might be. That leaner he hit late in the fourth quarter might've been the biggest shot of the game for either team. Big time clutch bucket.


Like you alluded to, it's awesome how the Nets can respond when a guy like JJ has a bad game. Unlike most teams, there's no one player you can shut down on the Nets to really hamper their offense. They're truly a team, and they're playing unselfish basketball just like their coach did when he was on the floor. It's been great to see.

Jon Presser
Jon Presser moderator

@jaymanjay There's been a lot of that talk lately, but I'm not so sure. I still think Lopez is a valuable piece of the puzzle, and even though they've flourished in the short-term without him, I still believe they're a better team with him out there in the long-term. I think there's room for Lopez, Teletovic, Blatche, and AK to all co-exist.

jaymanjay
jaymanjay

And where does The big ticket and pierce come into play then? Brooke is slow, chronically injured, and plays little to no difference. He is also soft. I'm just saying his offensive production has been clear replaced and he was given not much on the defensive end. The offense flows a lot better threw Johnson than threw Lopez no question.

Jon Presser
Jon Presser moderator

@jaymanjay I hesitate to say Brook is "chronically" injured. Until he broke his foot the first time, he'd been a pretty durable player. I guess we can call it a chronic injury since he broke it again, but he is the best offensive center in the NBA when he's out there and he's still just 25 years old. You don't just dump a guy with his ability for nothing, especially when we don't know how much longer KG is even going to play. He's still their best player, and I still think they're a better team in the long-term with him than without him, though there's no doubt they've been doing an excellent job adjusting to not having him out there.