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Discussion Starter #1
Would you be upset at getting the second best players instead of the first?

I ask because I feel all the #2's or second stringers (a la Jordan being #1 and Kobe #2, or Wilt #1 and Russell #2 etc)could be a team as good or better than the first team.

Just an interesting thought I've had for a while.

For me I would not be upset if I got Lebron instead of Larry Bird, or got Stockton instead of Magic (maybe a little) but the point is the gap between 1 and 2 is sometimes so tiny it doesn't matter at all.
 

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There's a good chance the number 2 team would be a better team, considering the #1 team would have a lot of ego.
 

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yeah the difference between having Wilt or Kareem or whatever is not large - in fact you might do well to not worry so much about 1st and 2nd players and could benefit chemistry-wise by going deeper to create balance and add role players - would it suck so bad to have Rodman instead of Malone or Duncan or Barkley for instance?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
yeah the difference between having Wilt or Kareem or whatever is not large - in fact you might do well to not worry so much about 1st and 2nd players and could benefit chemistry-wise by going deeper to create balance and add role players - would it suck so bad to have Rodman instead of Malone or Duncan or Barkley for instance?
Which is exactly my point. Whenever I am on forums and people start shitting on Kobe because he isn't as good as Jordan or Russell because he "played in the 40's" (which is bullshit!) I just go these are the top .00001 percent of the best players ever and you are saying they cant hang? PLEASE!
 

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If you are building a team based on the best player at each position versus the second best at each position, then you are right about the differences not necessarily being big.

But if you are just picking a team using any players, sometimes I wonder why not just pick the core of Jordan, Pippen, and Rodman while upgrading the center and point guard spots?
 

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you could do pretty well with that if Rodman were in his Pistons prime - add a '67 (leading the league in assists) Wilt and it probably wouldnt matter who your PG was as long as they could a trey
 

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Discussion Starter #8
If you are building a team based on the best player at each position versus the second best at each position, then you are right about the differences not necessarily being big.

But if you are just picking a team using any players, sometimes I wonder why not just pick the core of Jordan, Pippen, and Rodman while upgrading the center and point guard spots?
True. That team can go toe to toe with any team. And a team I feel are at their level and maybe a bit higher are the mid to late 60's Celtics.

It's funny though sometimes those other players who were whatevers i.e the PG and C of the bulls might have been exactly what that team needed.
 

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It's funny though sometimes those other players who were whatevers i.e the PG and C of the bulls might have been exactly what that team needed.
Yeah when I said upgrade I didn't necessarily mean HOF level.

Instead of Longley you could upgrade to a Divac or Brad Miller type that could pass, shoot, rebound and play out of the high post. And instead of Harper add a Mav/Knick version of Jason Kidd who hits the 3, plays smart defense, and gets assists without dominating the ball.

That's a heck of a team. I think they would fit together beautifully.
 

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I was thinking you could finish out a Jordan/Pippen team with current Lebron, MVP-level Kevin Garnett, and upgrade Rodman to Bill Russell. They could literally switch every screen. Who would you exploit? Let's say your team is...

Magic/Kobe/Bird/Duncan/Wilt

Lebron was practically born to guard Magic. Jordan and Kobe would go to war. Pippen would do his best to smother Bird. KG/Duncan and Wilt/Russell were battles for the ages. I just think the defensive advantage would win out in the long run. Magic/Bird are, of course, phenomenal passers... but the other team has no below average passer on the team.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Yeah when I said upgrade I didn't necessarily mean HOF level.

Instead of Longley you could upgrade to a Divac or Brad Miller type that could pass, shoot, rebound and play out of the high post. And instead of Harper add a Mav/Knick version of Jason Kidd who hits the 3, plays smart defense, and gets assists without dominating the ball.

That's a heck of a team. I think they would fit together beautifully.
I agree 100%
 

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Haven't read through the thread but in my opinion the best players at every position would probably be -

Magic
Jordan
Bird
Duncan
Kareem

with the second best being -

Oscar
Kobe
LeBron
KG/Malone/Barkley/Dirk/Pettit
Wilt

I think there's the biggest difference in point guard and power forward, a very sizable difference at shooting guard, and little difference at small forward/center depending on the context of what we're specifically evaluating.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Haven't read through the thread but in my opinion the best players at every position would probably be -

Magic
Jordan
Bird
Duncan
Kareem

with the second best being -

Oscar
Kobe
LeBron
KG/Malone/Barkley/Dirk/Pettit
Wilt

I think there's the biggest difference in point guard and power forward, a very sizable difference at shooting guard, and little difference at small forward/center depending on the context of what we're specifically evaluating.
Yes possibly but if you got Oscar Robertson instead of magic would you be disappointed or at such a disadvantage?

my whole point was 2 can be just as good as 1. I mean these players are the top 1% of NBA all time. And those other 99% are already the top %.0000001 on the planet.

Sent from my LG-C800 using VerticalSports.Com App
 

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At that level, the difference is so relative that it could come down to what players you would pick on a hypothetical team.

At positions such as point guard and power forward, you likely could find comparable value in the top six or seven positions. The center spot has a top tier or three and a second tier of three that is not that far behind. The only true drop in talent is at the shooting guard position, past the top three.
 

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Wilt/Russell were battles for the ages.
not really

In those games Wilt averaged 28.7 ppg and 28.7 rpg, Russell averaged 14.5ppg and 23.7rpg

Wilt's high game vs. Russell was 62, and he had six other 50+ point games against Russell . Russell's high game against Wilt was 37, and he had only two other 30+ point games against Wilt.

Wilt's record 55 rebound game was against Russell, and he had six other 40+ rebound games vs. Bill.
Russell only had one 40+ rebound night against Wilt.

and keep in mind that while Wilt played Russell straight up Russell was getting tons of help from his teammates on double and triple teams

considered head-to-head that's not really a battle
 

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not really

In those games Wilt averaged 28.7 ppg and 28.7 rpg, Russell averaged 14.5ppg and 23.7rpg

Wilt's high game vs. Russell was 62, and he had six other 50+ point games against Russell . Russell's high game against Wilt was 37, and he had only two other 30+ point games against Wilt.

Wilt's record 55 rebound game was against Russell, and he had six other 40+ rebound games vs. Bill.
Russell only had one 40+ rebound night against Wilt.

and keep in mind that while Wilt played Russell straight up Russell was getting tons of help from his teammates on double and triple teams

considered head-to-head that's not really a battle
Russell's head-2-head win percentage against Wilt in right about 60%. You're right. It wasn't that much of a battle at all.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Russell's head-2-head win percentage against Wilt in right about 60%. You're right. It wasn't that much of a battle at all.
not really

In those games Wilt averaged 28.7 ppg and 28.7 rpg, Russell averaged 14.5ppg and 23.7rpg

Wilt's high game vs. Russell was 62, and he had six other 50+ point games against Russell . Russell's high game against Wilt was 37, and he had only two other 30+ point games against Wilt.

Wilt's record 55 rebound game was against Russell, and he had six other 40+ rebound games vs. Bill.
Russell only had one 40+ rebound night against Wilt.

and keep in mind that while Wilt played Russell straight up Russell was getting tons of help from his teammates on double and triple teams

considered head-to-head that's not really a battle
Wilt statistically dominated Russell but Russell, aside from 69 always had the better team.

Now that is not to take away from Russell since what he did is he MADE those teams. He made the team so much better. He had no false sense of pride, all he cared about was winning, if that meant he score 5 points but just crash the glass, so be it. If it meant getting very chummy with Chamberlain and going to Chamberlains house and having dinner with his family so be it. He was a winner.

Now back to the point Wilt v.s Russell WILT would crush him and did.

Celtics vs Warriors/76ers/Lakers Celtics would normally beat them. Of course the Warriors were a real shit team and the 76ers were the I think the Syracuse team.

Anywho while Wilt is my favorite player and the man I consider one of if not the best of all time you can not ignore that Russell along with his starting 5 of Hall of Famers just always found a way to win.

The Celtics were the better team and possibly the greatest team of all time but they didn't have the greatest player, WILT.
 

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Russell's head-2-head win percentage against Wilt in right about 60%. You're right. It wasn't that much of a battle at all.
wins are a team stat, and it's ridiculous to try to credit a player who was so clearly outplayed by his head-to-head match-up with his team's success

further you're now trying to change your own terms where in your original post you were very much referring to one-on-one battles
 

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wins are a team stat, and it's ridiculous to try to credit a player who was so clearly outplayed by his head-to-head match-up with his team's success

further you're now trying to change your own terms where in your original post you were very much referring to one-on-one battles
When the two players are the best players on their respective teams, winning and losing often comes down to who won the head-to-head battle. Not who had the better stats, who shot so often that his teammates couldn't get in a rhythm, not who played to satisfy his own ego, but who did more to actually help his team win.
 
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