The Night Rodrigue Beaubois Was a Hall of Famer

Every once in awhile a relative no-name player has a huge game in the NBA, and when they do, it’s like fans won big on a slot machine. On March 27, 2010, when Mavericks guard Rodrigue Beaubois took the floor, fans hit the jackpot.

When Beaubois laced up his sneakers prior to Dallas’s 111-90 win against the lowly Golden State Warriors, he was a rookie trying to carve out a role on a playoff team. In 47 games, he averaged 6.6 points, 1.3 boards and 1.3 assists in a shade over 12 minutes per contest.

It appeared his career high 24 points on 10-of-17 shooting three weeks earlier against the Bulls might be the highlight of the 22-year-old’s season.

But then, something amazing happened. Perhaps it was the Warriors’ poor backcourt defense, which featured Monta Ellis and a young Stephen Curry. Maybe it was general malaise by a Golden State squad that entered the game 20-51. Whatever it was, Beaubois went off for an incredible 40 points.

Beaubois scored his 40 points on 15-of-22 shooting. He was 9-11 from beyond the arc and pulled down eight boards. Individually, none of these feats are awe-inspiring, but closer examination of the line as a whole reveals a miraculous achievement worth noting in the annals of NBA history.

40 points in the scope of great NBA scoring performances isn’t jaw-dropping. While guys like Tracy Murray and Corey Brewer have also scored 40 in a game, the list is littered with Hall of Famers. The most impressive part for Beaubois is that he averaged 7.1 points-per-game for his career and only cracked 20-points three other times in his four NBA seasons.

Like the 40 points, the 15 made shots on 68.2 percent shooting isn’t rare, but it’s typically reserved for Hall of Fame-caliber players. Again, Beaubois went way above his career marks. He only made 10-plus field goals in a game two other times in his short career.

The nine three-pointers is where this line gets particularly interesting. While the list of players for the previous stats numbers in the hundreds, the list of games with nine or more made threes stops at 92 (Stephen Curry accounts for 14 of those by himself). Keeping with the theme of overachieving – Beaubois never made more than four triples in a game any other time in his career.

What elevates this stat line to legendary status is the eight boards. The number of guys who have hauled in eight rebounds in a game is probably thousands of players long. I’m not going to go check. But like we established in the beginning, the phenomenon of these stats comes not from where they stack up individually in the pantheon of single-game numbers, but how they measure as a whole.

The comprehensive list of players in NBA history to post the box score Beaubois posted on March 27, 2010 is as follows:

Kobe Bryant

James Harden

Terrence Ross?

Stephen Curry

Rodrigue Beaubois

That is elite company, and also Terrence Ross is there.

It’s also worth noting that Beaubois pulled this off in 30 minutes. The only player to do it in less time was Curry (29). Everyone else needed 42 minutes or more.

Rodrigue Beaubois went on to play 182 games across four NBA seasons. While he had a couple promising games, he couldn’t quite find a niche in the Association. Where most NBA flameouts wave their towels and perfect their bench celebrations before their careers end, Beaubois was able to pull off something miraculous. His career may have been unremarkable, but for one night in Oakland, Rodrigue Beaubois was a Hall of Famer.

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