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Monday, March 8, 2010
Former UCLA guard Collison nets career-high

By Blair Angulo

In case you missed it, former UCLA standout point guard Darren Collison dished out a career-high 20 assists in the New Orleans Hornets' 135-131 win over the Golden State Warriors on Monday night.

Collison's rookie season has taken off since New Orleans' all-star leader Chris Paul was sidelined with a knee injury in late January. He is averaging nearly 19 points and nearly nine assists in 25 starts.

Monday's stellar performance may have left Bruins fans wondering where this double-double machine was last season when UCLA exited the tournament in the second round.

The same goes for Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook, who averages nearly 17 points and eight assists per game.

Perhaps these two were not used correctly during their time in Westwood. Perhaps their numbers have benefited by the fast-paced style of the NBA.

Whatever Collison and Westbrook's success -- along with the continued progression of Arron Afflalo, Jordan Farmar and Jrue Holiday -- may be attributed to, it only raises the standard by which coach Ben Howland's current batch of underachieving guards is judged upon.

That may not be fair to Malcolm Lee and Jerime Anderson, but that's just the way it is.