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Who's the 3rd best defender in NBA history?

  • Bruce Bowen

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  • Sam Jones

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  • Alvin Robertson

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  • Michael Cooper

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  • Ron Artest

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  • Bobby Jones

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  • Dave DeBusschere

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  • Kevin Garnett

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  • Patrick Ewing

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  • Ben Wallace

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Discussion Starter #1

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3. Scottie Pippen
4. Michael Jordan
5. Tim Duncan
6. Dennis Rodman
7. Lebron James

something like that? It is really hard to compare some of these guys. Alvin Robertson was a helluva defender... but comparing him to Dikembe is apples to oranges.
 

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Will of Chilltown
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Considering in the 90's you were able to hand check your opponents...that give a HUGE leg up for everyone on defense before 2000 or whenever the no hand check rule applied.
 

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Robinson should be a poll option, he's easily top 5 IMO.

After Russell and Hakeem it gets tough to decide but I like Duncan. He didn't peak quite as high as some other guys defensively but he was still dominant and had incredible consistency. The anchor (or co-anchor with Robinson early on) on so many top defenses throughout his career with a variety of supporting casts - 11 straight seasons of the Spurs being a top 3 defense (including five #1 and four #2 defenses).
 

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Oladipo for the people
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3. Scottie Pippen
4. Michael Jordan
5. Tim Duncan
6. Dennis Rodman
7. Lebron James

something like that? It is really hard to compare some of these guys. Alvin Robertson was a helluva defender... but comparing him to Dikembe is apples to oranges.
Lebron is nowhere near a top 10 defender all time. Come on man.

Just out of recent players, you'd honestly rank him over Ron Artest? Why? Because he plays the passing lanes?
 

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3. Scottie Pippen
4. Michael Jordan
5. Tim Duncan
6. Dennis Rodman
7. Lebron James

something like that? It is really hard to compare some of these guys. Alvin Robertson was a helluva defender... but comparing him to Dikembe is apples to oranges.
Considering guys are voting for Lebron James as a Top-7 defender All-time, i refuse to get into this. I don't need this kind of aggravation. F!
 

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X-Mas Taker
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I'm still mystified olajuwon is 2nd.

in reality no one thought hakeem was a top 2 defender before he was winning titles with fadewaways.

that being said no perimeter defender belongs in the top 5 possibly top 10.

dwight howard
wilt
russell
walton
mutumbo
duncan
robinson
eaton
ben wallace
nate thurmond
and even abdul jabbar come before any guard or small forward in my opinion an elite post defender affects how the other team plays and gobble up rebounds ending offensive possessions and can force teams to stay outside.
 

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Will of Chilltown
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Considering guys are voting for Lebron James as a Top-7 defender All-time, i refuse to get into this. I don't need this kind of aggravation. F!
Past two season's Lebron's opponents shot the worse FG% out of the whole league while he was guarding them. Considering he defends every single position...Which on that list only he can do, and if he's doing it like that. I'd say he should be top 3 at least.
 

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Sorry guys, Lebron is an incredible defender. If you want to argue someone over where I had him (7th or something, and I half-assed the list without paying much attention to the options) feel free. I don't particularly like the guy, but I watched him shut down Derrick Rose (who ran past everyone in the league prior to that) and I've seen him effectively cover nearly every position on the court. He plays defense well both off and on the ball... he does play passing lanes well and he is strong enough to body up with basically anyone in the league. His teams are consistently excellent defensively. He's a great defender, like it or not. Can you imagine what he'd be able to do with the handcheck with his strength?
 

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no way pippen is 3..............
jordan was a better defender than pippen.

id take rodman but duncan is the next best.
 

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Considering he defends every single position...Which on that list only he can do, and if he's doing it like that.
He can defend point guards down through stretch fours. Any center with an offensive game or big, back to the basket power forward gives him a ton of trouble. It's part of the reason Miami nearly lost to a hobbled Celtics team this past year. It's not a knock on Lebron, but people really need to stop with the whole "he defends fives positions!" nonsense.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Good battle going between Pippen and Duncan. We need more votes to figure that thing out.
 

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Rodman is so underrated here. He was the defensive specialist of the Bulls, was given the assignment of guarding the best players of the other team, was able to guard all 5 positions. He had to take on the Karl Malones, Charles Barkleys of this world. He was also the one who guarded Magic (When he was with the Pistons).

People seem to only remember Rodman for his tenure with the Bulls but he was a defensive specialist with the Pistons and Spurs before that.
 

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And since people are all about accolades, here are Rodman's

2× NBA Defensive Player of the Year (1990–1991)
7× All-Defensive First Team (1989–1993, 1995–1996)
All-Defensive Second Team (1994)
7× NBA rebounding champion (1992–1998)
 

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What's the rationale for voting Pippen 3rd? I agree with Da Grinch that several bigs are clearly more valuable. A strong interior presence who can block/alter shots at the rim and provide elite defensive rebounding has more defensive value than even the best perimeter defender of all time. He allows perimeter guys to play tighter against their assignments, he can clean up their mistakes, he can force teams to play further from the basket, he essentially finishes the defensive possession by grabbing the board, etc.

Pippen's best case is that we saw him approach the defensive impact of a big at his absolute defensive peak in 1995 (best defensive peak of any perimeter player ever). Dragging the Bulls to the 2nd best defense without Grant or any other significant interior presence and without Jordan for most of the season is impressive... but that's him at his peak, it's only one season, and it's still not a better defensive season than what we've seen from several other players.
 

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Rodman could cover both of his competitors and just about anyone they could cover - Rodman once held Shaq scoreless for a quarter - this was before all the clown show shenanigans later in his career
 

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I'm still mystified olajuwon is 2nd.

in reality no one thought hakeem was a top 2 defender before he was winning titles with fadewaways.
Before he won his first championship, Hakeem was already a 6 time ALL-D and a 2x DPOY, twice the rebounding king, 3 times league leader in bpg, and once even came third in steals!

that being said no perimeter defender belongs in the top 5 possibly top 10.

dwight howard
wilt
russell
walton
mutumbo
duncan
robinson
eaton
ben wallace
nate thurmond
and even abdul jabbar come before any guard or small forward in my opinion an elite post defender affects how the other team plays and gobble up rebounds ending offensive possessions and can force teams to stay outside.
I agree with this in principle. There should be, however, a few exceptions to the rule, like a Dennis Rodman.
 

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Some of it is about relative value, at least for me. Pippen could hound a PG like Mark Jackson or Magic Johnson from end to end and disrupt an entire offense. He could basically guard 1-4, and do it well. Pippen played the passing lanes as well as anyone ever did... he was an incredible on ball defender and an incredible help defender. The reason he and MJ were so unstoppable was that they both had an impact defensively that you only typically get from big guys... You're far more likely to be able to find a big with the defensive impact of some of these elite level guys (the Mutombo's, Wallace's, Mourning's of the world) than you are to find a perimeter player that gives you what Pippen gave you.

Plus, a list of all big guys would be boring.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
If we don't get any more votes soon, we might have to close this in favor of the big fundamental.
 
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