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Nets History Spotlight: Stephon Marbury Scores 50

Coming off first All-Star Game, Marbury posted second 50-point game in franchise's NBA history

When Stephon Marbury played in his first All-Star Game in 2001, he had a very good night. Then he came home and had a better one.

Making his first All-Star Game appearance, Marbury knocked down two 3-pointers in the final minute, including the game-winner with 28 seconds left as the East came back from a 21-point fourth-quarter deficit for a 111-110 win in Washington, D.C on Feb. 11, 2001.

On Feb. 13, 2001, in the Nets’ first game after the break, Marbury exploded for 50 points against the Los Angeles Lakers. His big fourth-quarter carried the Nets to overtime, but they fell short there in a 113-110 loss.

YES Network will broadcast this Nets Classic on Wednesday night at 8 p.m. It will be preceded by YES We’re Here at 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., featuring highlights of interviews with classic Nets players from the past two months of YES We’re Here.

Marbury’s big night was the second 50-point game in the franchise’s NBA history, following John Williamson on April 4, 1978. Vince Carter also hit 50 for the Nets, and Deron Williams set the franchise NBA record in 2012 with 57 points.

After four 50-point games in the franchise’s first 43 NBA seasons, the Nets have seen three in 2019-20 — two by Kyrie Irving and another from Caris LeVert.

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An electrifying guard out of Brooklyn’s Coney Island, Marbury was a New York high school legend, and after detours to Georgia Tech for one college season and Minnesota to start his NBA career, he came back to the area when he was acquired by the Nets in a trade on March 11, 1999.

In his first full season with the Nets, Marbury earned his first All-NBA honor in 1999-2000, a Third Team nod after averaging 22.2 points, 8.4 assists, and 1.5 steals per game. Similar numbers propelled him to his first All-Star Game appearance the following season.

Two days after facing off against Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal in the All-Star Game, Marbury got a quick rematch with the Nets hosting the Lakers at the Meadowlands to tip off the second half of the season. Los Angeles, the defending NBA champion, would go on to win the second of three consecutive titles.

Marbury had 17 points at halftime, but the Lakers — who would lead for 46 of the game’s 53 minutes — were up 44-37 at the break, and 74-71 going into the fourth quarter after the Nets nearly matched their first-half output with 34 points in the third quarter.

The Lakers were up 93-82 midway through the fourth quarter when Marbury took over and took off. He scored 17 of New Jersey’s final 22 points of regulation in the last 6:13. With the Lakers still up 104-98 with a minute to go, Marbury knocked down two 3-pointers in the final minute — just as he had two days earlier in the All-Star Game. The second tied the game at 104 with 27.0 seconds to go and forced overtime.

Marbury finished the fourth quarter with 19 points, shooting 5-of-6 overall, 2-of-3 from 3-point range, and 7-of-7 from the foul line.

Forty seconds into overtime, Marbury finished a layup to give him 50 points for the game, but he did not score again as the Lakers pulled out the 113-110 win as Bryant converted a three-point play with 4.8 seconds to go. Bryant scored 38 points for Los Angeles, and O’Neal had 32.

Marbury’s 50 points came on 17-of-29 shooting, including 4-of-8 from 3-point range and 12-of-16 from the foul line. He also had 12 assists and played 47 minutes. Keith Van Horn had 20 points and eight rebounds for the Nets.

Marbury finished the season with a career-high scoring average of 23.9 points per game and 7.6 assists. It would be his final season in New Jersey, as he was traded for Jason Kidd in a blockbuster point guard exchange that summer.

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