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“It was pretty comical” — Dan Majerle on the time Manute Bol couldn’t miss from downtown

The Phoenix Suns gave Manute Bol the Ben Simmons treatment by sagging off him when he was behind the line - and he made them pay.
Manute Bol

Manute Bol

7-foot-7 Manute Bol, who’s tied with Gheorghe Mureșan as the tallest player to ever play in the NBA, was known for his shot-blocking abilities. The man led the league in blocks twice and was selected into the NBA All-Defensive Second Team. However, in one particular game, Bol shocked the world when he knocked down a series of 3-pointers. Phoenix Suns icon Dan Majerle was amazed by the performance. So much so that he called Bol’s shooting spree “comical.”

Manute Bol for three!

In the game between the Phoenix Suns and Philadelphia 76ers on March 3, 1993, Bol knocked down six 3-pointers in the second half. This is a regular occurrence in today’s NBA, even from big men like Bol. But being a 3-point assassin was not written on Bol’s scouting report. The entire Suns were bewildered when Bol started knocking down bombs utilizing his funky jump shot.

I watched a clip of that game a little while ago and we all kept looking at him like, ‘He’s not going to keep making them,’ and he did. His shot was so unorthodox. When he kept making them it was kind of funny, to tell the truth, to watch that big guy out there shooting threes. Nowadays, it’s nothing to see a 7-5 guy out there shooting threes. Back then, it wasn’t like he was going to be out there just firing away, but he just kept making one after another. It was pretty comical,” Majerle said, per the Los Angeles Times.

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As observed in the clip, the Suns were giving Bol the Ben Simmons treatment. 6-foot-10 Mark West started seriously contesting Bol’s shot after the third 3-pointer. But it didn’t matter. Bol already found the stroke and was hitting more than missing.

Jeff Hornacek pulls the curtains

While the Suns’ jaws dropped with every 3-pointer Bol hit, the 76ers were not extremely surprised by the Sudanese-American’s performance. Jeff Hornacek recalled Bol used to swish the net in practice, even with that funky form.

I can’t remember what happened yesterday. Was I on that team? Dee, was I on that team? Was I? No … Manute was funny. We would crack up all the time. I thought when he started shooting those threes, it was so goofy people would let him shoot it – but he’d make it in practice. It was a little slingshot from the side,” Hornacek said, per FanSided.

Bol finished with 18 points, three rebounds, and three blocks. He was 6-of-12 from downtown. Though the 76ers lost 125-115, his performance is still one of the most memorable. Way before the advent of the stretch-big, Bol was already knocking down 3-pointers. If only his coach had given him the green light early on. 

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