It's probably more important that, because of their strength and guts, Green, Barnes and Iggy can all d-up bigger guys, but I think Thompson and Livingston's ability to lockdown smaller guys gets over looked, and is really important to what they do.Just because guys have the physical makeup to do what Draymond Green does, doesn't mean they have it mentally. And that's no knock at all on the guys you mentioned (Lebron, Kawhi, etc.), Dray is just wired at another level when it comes to blood, sweat and tears type of stuff. He is the embodiment of cliches like, "playing each possession as if it were your last."I agree totally with you about comparing eras, but in Jordan, Pippin, Rodman and Harper, the 72 win Bulls also had four 6'6"-6'8" interchangeable defensive pieces on the court together. I don't think this is a coincidence.
Definitely true about Thompson and Livingston. The number of elite defenders they can put around Steph is insane. I see what you are saying about Draymond's mentality but if the Spurs or the Cavs are down 2-1 in a series, their players had better be willing to try anything to come back. Kawhi and LeBron have both been Finals MVP's before so I wouldn't be put anything past those guys. I do think Steve Kerr doesn't get quite enough credit for being willing to think outside the box when it comes to changing his line-ups. A lot of coaches become so wedded to what works in the regular season that they wouldn't think to switch up with the season on the line because that's not who they are.Those Bulls were slightly before my time when it comes to really watching basketball but it seems like Harper - Jordan - Pippen - Kukoc - Rodman would be as well equipped as anyone to beat the Warriors at their own game. I also wonder how Draymond would hold up against the really great post up 5's in a 7-game series. I still can't see him being able to lock up a guy like Kareem, Duncan or Hakeem, especially if the other team is playing 4-out around them.
Oh man, Olajuwon would have been unstoppable in the space that today's game provides. Rule changes would have been in order--like widening the lane for Wilt, and the NCAA outlawing dunking for Alcindor.
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Do you think anything different of Harry Barnes after this 4 game stretch. He looks a lot better this year.
I think he's kind of just a guy as a 3 but he's really good as a small-ball 4. If I was going to pay him a bunch of money, it would be under the idea that I would be playing him as a PF for most of the game. I think he'd really good next to a big 5 like Drummond or Towns.
He is also six months from 24, and may have some playmaking and/or post-up skills still to come.Dear Mitch Kupchak,Don't even bother with KD or any other free agents over 25. Just give Harrison Barnes the max, sweeten the deal with LA sheen, and let the kids grow.
I'm not sure how well Barnes and Randle would work together. That was my worry with Randle all the way back to his draft - it's just hard to fit pieces around him.I do think Barnes will get the max from somebody in the off-season. Guys on winning teams get paid. That's how it goes.
Guys with NBA size, speed, and strength, who can knock down open jumpers really get paid. I don't think Barnes is the kind of player who can make a bad team good, but I think he can make a good team great. As a Laker fan, I'm hopeful that the backcourt duo of Russell and Clarkson (supplemented by a top three pick, fingers-crossed) will eventually take them from bad to good.I'm with you on Randle. He's very bouncy and very strong, but the combination of bad shot and no shot blocking leaves me wondering how he will be a starter in the league. Plus his much ballyhooed playmaking skills don't hold up in half court offense because it takes his defender about three possessions to realize that he has zero right hand.I fear Randle will never have higher value than he does right now, and I'd move him before his holes are seen for what they really are, and are no longer mislabeled as a by-product of youth. Similar to what the Sixers did with MCW and what the Celtics should do with Marcus Smart.