Aside from a pair of flukey efforts during Round 1 against the Hawks, Tyler Herro has continued to show out for the Miami Heat during the playoffs. Through two bouts with James Harden and the Sixers, the baller is putting up 21.5 points per outing while ripping the nets at a 55.6% clip.
In other words, he has done exactly the kind of damage off the bench one would expect from a player who earned 96 out of a possible 100 first-place votes to capture Sixth Man of the Year honors.
Herro’s award win and continued production have some saying that the baller is backing his earlier claims that he’s on the same level as young stars like Luka Doncic, Trae Young and Ja Morant. That said, not everyone is on board with the concept.
On Wednesday night, a pair of Hall of Famers squared off over Herro’s spot in the Association’s pecking order on TNT’s Inside the NBA.
Shaq & Chuck Joust Over Herro
During the halftime show for Game 2 between the South Beach Crew and Philly, Shaquille O’Neal recalled Herro’s declaration and endorsed it as truth.
“Anybody who talks like that and comes out and plays like that, you’ve got to believe them,” O’Neal said. “He said ‘you guys are always marveling Trae and marveling Luka, you need to marvel me,’ and we’re all marveling him right now.”
Studio host Ernie Johnson attempted to move on from there, but Charles Barkley quickly interjected, quibbling with Big Shaq’s assessment.
“The kid’s a heck of a player but he’s not in the same category as those guys because they’ve got different responsibilities,” Barkley said. “Coming off the bench, being instant offense playing against bench guys is not the same as going there every night, having to get 25-30 and lead your team. Plain and simple.”
At multiple points during Barkley’s argument, Shaq could be heard reaffirming his belief in Herro as a game-changing star.
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Herro Gives Props to Previous 6MOY Winners
When asked by Johnson about his award win during an interview with the aforementioned TNT crew, Herro was quick to shout out some of the best bench ballers of the modern era.
Namely, Lou Williams and Jamal Crawford, both of whom won the award on three occasions.
“You gotta salute Lou Will. For me growing up, watching Lou being sixth man, I feel like when I think of the sixth man award it’s Lou Will or Jamal Crawford.” Herro said. “So growing up, those were the two guys I grew up watching as the sixth man, so they paved the way for all of us and I’ll just continue to keep it going and there’ll be someone after me to win this award next year.”