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Wednesday, June 13th, 2007 at 3:36 pm  |  171 responses

Links: NBA Finals Diary, Day 7

“Dude, what in the world were you thinking?”

by Lang Whitaker

Tuesday! Or is it Wednesday? I’m not sure. I just know that three games are done, and we just need the Spurs to win one more game and I get to go home. I’m really hoping I’ll get to go home soon.

This morning I had to wake up early and do a radio interview, and the hosts apologized for waking me up so early. I pointed out that it was fine since I got to sleep through most of the game last night. No, it wasn’t a very exciting game. The highlight was definitely bumping into the Sternbot on the way to our seats.

I went over to practice this morning, which was depressing. The Cavs were all saying the right things — we’ve just got to play hard, anything can happen, we can play better, blah blah blah — but let’s be honest about this: there’s not much chance that the Cavs are going to win the NBA Finals. You can witness, you can believe, you can rise up, but you can’t beat the Spurs. Not this year.

With the Finals basically decided, unless LeBron and the Cavs can pull off the greatest comeback in the history of modern civilization, last night in the media hospitality suite I started coming up with people who should be considered for MVP of the Finals; basically, which people had the biggest impact on this year’s Finals without actually playing in the Finals?

I immediately came up with a few names and before long a bunch of media folk were throwing names around: Brian McIntyre, Baron Davis (knocked out the Mavs), Marc Iavaroni (didn’t keep Amare and Diaw on the bench), Amare and Diaw (for getting tossed), Flip Saunders, Stu Jackson. The list could go on and on. (And it continued going on and on this morning at practice while chatting with a few writers. I think someone you all should be reading on a bigger site is going to run with this idea and do a whole column on it.)

Anderson Varejao also merits a mention, because of that insane shot he threw up last night that drew nothing but glass. Why did LeBron pass him the ball? I think because Bron probably thought Andy would throw it right back to him. but he didn’t. Instead he took it upon himself to go one-on-one against Tim Duncan, which was a total disaster.

Who should really win the MVP? I think Tim Duncan will probably win it, but Tony Parker is just as deserving. He’s torched Cleveland’s guards again and again, plus he’s got one of the hottest chicks in the game wearing his chain. Last night a Spurs official I spoke with also nominated Bruce Bowen, pointing out he’s mostly contained LeBron and he will probably end up leading the Spurs in minutes played in the Finals.

But Parker hasn’t had much of an impact defensively — just because the Cavs guards can’t shoot doesn’t mean they aren’t getting wide-open jumpers — and Bowen’s contributions are probably a little too abstract. Duncan, however, is the rock for the Spurs, always there demanding double teams and more often than not scoring when they don’t double him. With each game he plays, Duncan cements his status as the best power forward to ever play the game.

Otherwise, things are slow here in Cleveland today. Sam and I ate lunch at the Hard Rock Cafe, mainly because we’d never been there before. It was totally unmemorable. Now we’ve got the rest of the day to kill. There’s a media barbeque somewhere tonight, but I’m not really fired up for that. We’ve reached the point where it’s all downhill from here. And I just want it to end. I was reading the game story in USA Today this morning and I read this quote from Duncan…

“It doesn’t change at all,” Tim Duncan said of the Spurs’ approach. “We need to get one more. That’s it…we’ll come out and try to finish it then. If it takes one or two more, we’re willing to do that.”

I read that and actually yelled, No! Not one or two more! One more, Spurs! Win this thing and let us all be free of these Finals. Would it be amazing if the Cavs came back and won four in a row? Yes it would, but I just don’t think it’s happening. These are San Antonio’s Finals. We are just witnesses.

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  • Wil

    I’m the 1st witness to this post.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Russ Bengtson

    Eva Longoria is the most overrated person involved in the Finals by far.

  • http://www.nba.com Both Teams Played Hard

    how about boobie, russ?

  • j-bird

    my MVP of the playoofs is big shot Rob

  • http://www.nba.com Both Teams Played Hard

    i guaransheed that the spurs will repeat

  • hoopshypeisbetterthanslam

    Why did everyone hate on Nowitzki but Lebron is basically getting a pass for doing the same things? They double he passes out just like Dirk did. All I hear is how his team needs to step up. The hype is premature. He is good maybe even great but he still needs a Robin to go with his Batman abilities. There are no one man gangs Lebron included.

  • DBlizzy!

    Varejao should be shot for that stunt last night. LeBron got stuck and clearly just passed to him to regain his dribble. Instead he says “It’s go time” and decides to take TD on. BRILLIANT!

  • Bouncyman

    In my opinion Duncan cemented his status as the best power forward ever in the third quarter of game seven against Detroit two years ago… the sequence went something like… Duncan caught the ball… double came, kick out to wide open Ginobili for three…Duncan in the post again…double comes, kick out to wide open Bowen for three… Duncan in the post again… double comes late… destroys Tayshaun Prince, fouled by Rip Hamilton, three point play… don’t think the Spurs ever looked back. I may have gotten the order of the sequence wrong, but you get the point!
    Tim Duncan the best power forward to ever play the game. (Lucky for him David Robinson was the center when he came into the league so everyone thinks of Duncan as a PF instead of a C).

  • Boing Dynasty

    hoopshypeisbetterthanslam, the answer to your first question is: Josh Howard, Jason Terry, Jerry Stackhouse, and Devin Brown.

  • Boing Dynasty

    Also “Hooops Hype is better than SLAM”, seems like it should be a headline on The Onion.

  • http://myspace.com/bodiebarnett jbn74sb

    Duncan is as much of a center as he is a power forward.

  • Holiday

    If I played against a bunch of kids from elementary I would dominate too, and that is practically what duncan is doing! When the real great power forwards played there was others that could compete I mean Moses Malone, Karl Malone, Barkley, even guy’s like Shawn Kemp at least played against legit compitition! yeah there are a few guy’s that are good PF’s but most are young and unexperienced, or are making comeback’s from injury or just undersized, he is 7’1 I do believe (refering to Duncan) yes he is great but don’t be so quick to throw an all-time label on that just yet!

  • Cheryl

    Sideshow (erroneously) thought he’d get called for the 3-seconds, so he hoped (stupidly, but he’s just 2? years old, right Russ?) he’d get it up and get the rebound. Poor thing. Was that really the pic after that shot, Lang? If so, I can totally hear Duncan saying that!–ASPOV

  • Cheryl

    Holiday, name a PF with more rings(4)?

  • DBlizzy!

    Let’s just call Duncan great and leave it at that. The game has evolved so much over the years that comparing players from different generations just becomes really difficult.

  • Tom

    I think he’s the greatest pf to play definitely, mailman couldn’t play D like Duncan. As far as big man go, maybe he’s in the bottom of the top 10, maybe 7 or 8 all-time, which is pretty amazing considering how little hype he gets.

  • Dennard

    I’m with Russ, Eva really isn’t all that fly if you ask me, she has that make-up caked on pretty thick.

  • Holiday

    Mailman defended him pretty well! Oh and Dennis Rodman has at least 4 maybe 5, and Horry Had 2 with Houston and 3 with the Lakers and about to get his 2nd with the Spurs so 7 so what does that prove!

  • http://www.myspace.com/mikebone Simmy Sosa

    Robert Horry is a PF and this will be his seventh ring. Even though he is one of the most clutch performers ever he doesn’t rank among the greatest PFs of all time.

  • Holiday

    Oh and if Duncan is true Power forward then so was Ewing, Shaq, Hakeem, Kareem, Mikan, Mourning, Robinson, ect, ect , ect!

  • dasniper14

    how about dennis rodman, detroit bad boys days and then bulls, won a few rings there…but he’s by no means the greatest PF ever. i’m just sayin’
    kemp was a beast back in the day though

  • Holiday

    Bill Russell was smaller than Duncan and he played center but was probably a true PF and he count em had 11 ring’s and like 9 straight I do believe!

  • howard

    the reason Nowitzki gets more flak than ‘Bron is because it was the Mavs’ year to win the championship. Dirk’s team was talented and should’ve won. ‘Bron and the Cavs weren’t expected to compete for a championship this year, on paper the Cavs vs Spurs is one-sided. Dirk still sucks, btw.

  • Cheryl

    Duncan is a 5 with 4 and 5 skills, raising his stature that much more. c’mon, holiday, bring it. –ASPOV

  • Allenp

    Yo, Holiday, you need to drop this Malone crusade.

    Duncan is hands down better than Malone. Seriously, it’s not even close on basketball skills.

    And Barkely said he thinks Duncan is better than him. So, unless you’re going to argue Bob Petit or Elgin Baylor, Duncan wins.

  • Allenp

    Howard makes a good point.

    But the fact is, Bron is slumming. He hasn’t been aggressive enough, and he hasn’t been the game changer he can be. Granted, the Spurs are outstanding on defense, but he needs to make them work harder.

  • Holiday

    His size and length give him an advantage and that mean’s he raised his stature? Wow! oh and Karl Malone was a 3 time all defensive First team selection and one time 2nd team! Oh and I don’t know all that computer geek bull (ASPOV)! And I aint trying to hate on Duncan but none of your arguments are helping I mean you just got shot down with the whole “who has more ring’s” argument!

  • Allenp

    And you can’t count Russell as a four if you want. I still think you can argue that Duncan is better than him as a four. Better offensive arsenal, comparable rebounder, slightly worse defender, comparable passer, better overall skills.

  • Holiday

    What 2nd alltime in scoring one of the top rebounder’s of alltime, and would F*ck Duncan up in a street fight don’t get him any respect! Oh Allenp you already proved your an idiot so backoff!

  • Allenp

    i meant to say you can count Russell

  • Holiday

    Wow Russell was ten time’s the defender Duncan is I mean he defend guys like Wilt , Kareem, among other’s and now Duncan is great cause he can stop the all mighty Cavs front line oh my!!! and believe me there is no comparison in rebounding Bill would kill Timmy in that part of the game!

  • Holiday

    And what does it matter what Barkley say’s, two year’s ago he was claiming Ginobli was the best player on the Spurs!

  • Allenp

    No offense, but Duncan is a has been named all-defense every year of his career.
    I think that beats Karl.
    Plus, he regularly makes all defense first team and all NBA first team, which also beats Karl. And he’s been doing it since his rookie year.

    MOre importantly, he didn’t benefit from playing with one the NBA’s greatest point guards for nearly his entire career. Duncan has never had another superstar on his team. Robinson never averaged more than 12 and 10 with Timmy.

    Duncan has better post moves, is a better passer, better defender and has more rings.

    Malone was mainly a finisher and rebounder. You did not run your team through malone. If you watched the Finals marathon, all of Malones flaws were on full display.

  • Bouncyman

    No Holiday, the fact that Malone would “F*ck Duncan up in a street fight” doesn’t get him any respect… that has nothing to do with basketball. Malone was a 3 time all defensive first team selection and one time second team. How many all defensive first team/second team selections does Duncan have?

  • Allenp

    Man, where are you getting the ten times stuff from?

  • Allenp

    I posted that Bouncy man. Holiday ignored that cause it weakened his point

  • Allenp

    Duncan came up with Sheed, Garnett, Dirk, Pau, Randolph, Webber, and whoever else has played the four the past few years.

    He ain’t played no chumps.

  • Holiday

    First Duncan has always had a well rounded team, second he learned alot from Robinson, Tony Parker is an allstar, so is Ginobli, So was Robison, Avery was a damn good Point for them, oh and Karl pretty much carried the Scoring load himself who else did they have seriously besides stockton who wasn’t a big scorer ever!

  • Allenp

    Dude is holding Malone’s jock cause he has top scoring totals and rebounding totals.

    News Flash, Malone scored more points than Mike, and he ain’t better than Mike.

  • Allenp

    Duncan won his first two rings with no CURRENT all-stars on his team.

    Robinson was on the decline completely and manu and parker had not been named all stars yet.

    But, if you are going to count any all-star appearances, Jeff Hornacek was also an all-star.

  • Allenp

    your argument is stupid. the jazz had talent, just like the spurs had talent. the question was, which player was dependent on his talent to make him better and which player made his talent better.

    Finally, there is nothing I can think of as a player that Malone did better than Duncan, except run the wing. That’s it. And don’t bring up the total scoring numbers, cause anybody who watches ball knows that karl was not the scorer kareem, wilt and mike were, yet he has two of those three beat.

  • Holiday

    Yeah well how come when there was good compitition like Webber with the Kings or The Shaq and Kobe Lakers Duncan never made any noise?

  • Holiday

    He hasn’t won a chip against a real power house yet, what the Knicks, or the pistons, maybe the Nets?

  • Allenp

    Uh, Duncan won a ring in 99, 03, 04 and 05. He made noise every year, regularly making the conference Finals.

    And, while he may have learned from Robinson, since he has made all-nba since set foot in the league, I think he had things pretty well figured out.

  • Holiday

    Really what has he proved? they can beat weaker team’s well don’t tell me that The Bulls were the Greatest of all time and Jordan was the greatest of all time and Phil is the greatest coach of all time and tell me that Malone Chocked! He simply played in a time were the teams and compition was way better!

  • Allenp

    Which powerhouse did malone beat again?

  • Holiday

    04 seems like that was the Piston idiot!

  • Holiday

    ’99 was tainted and how come he couldn’t beat the Laker’s?

  • Allenp

    That’s fine if you just count the Finals, but uh, who did they beat to get to the Finals? Didn’t they beat a too young Sonics team and an aging Rockets team?

    Malone didn’t have to play Jordan in the Finals for two years and he couldn’t even make the Finals since the Rockets picked up back to back rings. What were his excuses those years?

  • Holiday

    The Spurs couldn’t beat any of the team’s that won it through the ’90′s!

  • Allenp

    Who do you think he beat in 2003?
    The effing Lakers, dumbass.

  • Allenp

    How do you know who the Spurs could beat?

  • Allenp

    In 93-94 and 94-95, Jordan was out of the league. Were those Rocket teams the best of all time and coached by the greatest coach of all time too?

  • Holiday

    OK he got to finals both times after the Rocket’s won there championships!

  • Allenp

    I gave Duncan one too many rings in one of my earlier posts.

  • Holiday

    Well they couldn’t beat the Bulls am I wrong, and Hakeem would have school Duncan all up and down the court like he did Shaq and Ewing!

  • Holiday

    Oh and when Malone was with the Laker’s didn’t they come back from being down 2-0 or something like that? yeah thats right!

  • Holiday

    Oh and yeah you’ve been screwin stats up all afternoon!

  • Allenp

    actually, that’s the only stat i messed up since that’s the only stat i used. And since I voluntarily corrected myself, what’s the big deal. he still won three rings, two of them without current All-Stars on his squad. You can’t dispute that. You can’t dispute that Malone had one of the greatest points of all time setting him up his whole career. Dude, you really lost all respect from me when you argued a few days ago that Stockton was better than Magic, because Magic was just tall.

    The all-defensive team stuff is easily found on nba.com, I’m sure if you check it out you’ll find it.

    And, you said that Malone couldn’t win the big one because he faced the greatest team, with the greatest player and greatest coach.

    96 Bulls are considerd the greatest team, not ’97 and ’98. Karl didn’t face the ’96 Bulls because he couldn’t beat the Sonics. Before that, he couldn’t beat the Rockets to make it to the Finals the two years Mike took a break.

    So, why exactly couldn’t he succeed those years.

  • Allenp

    So, basically, when Kemp and Hakeem fell off, Malone finally made the Finals.

    And you said earlier that Duncan would get killed by Hakeem, you’re probably right. But I’d wager he wouldn’t get killed by Kemp.

  • http://mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Max Airington

    I don’t know Allen those Sonics were tough.

  • http://mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Max Airington

    But Duncan is still way better than Malone. Way better.

  • http://mybleedingfingertips.blogspot.com/ Max Airington

    Bye.

  • http://myspace.com/bodiebarnett jbn74sb

    Again, Duncan is more of a center than a PF.

  • Holiday

    I never said Stockton was a better basketball player i just think for what a point guard is supposed to do stockton was the best at that kind of like say Micheal Vick is probably a way better football player overall than Peyton Manning but as far as quarterbacking a team and just passing overall Payton way above and beyond vick!

  • Holiday

    And I believe pound for pound so to speak Malone is better, as Duncan is taller and has a longer reach but to say Malone was a forward that could just run the floor is an understatement, he upitimized the pick and roll and post play!

  • Holiday

    I don’t honestly believe that Duncan isn’t that great but don’t dis credit the other Great forwards, and reguardless what anybody thinks Duncan has had an easy path to his greatness! He has had a lot more to work with than Malone, now barkley on the other hand had his chance in Houston with Hakeem, Pippen, and Drexler!

  • Holiday

    Oh and no doubt Duncan would man handle Kemp!

  • Ryu

    Thing is, not only the people in Cleveland are witnesses, the Cavs players too. Probably they shuold rock those t-shirts after lost games.

  • Dennard

    Tim Duncan isn’t really a power forward. He is really a center. But it doesn’t even particularly matter, he is one of the top 5 big men ever. I am not even gonna argue with anyone about this. Just look at the results. And this is the LAST time I gonna mention this, Duncan > Malone.

  • Deus Ex Machina

    the knock against Karl Malone is that despite all his individual achievments, and having with him arguably the greatest point of the 90′s at his prime, Utah only went to the FINALS twice. Duncan, with that ragtag of a lineup (look at those overachieving 99, 03, 05 lineups), is about to win his FOURTH TITLE. two finals appearance and four titles arent even on the same page.

  • SA

    Wow, Lang, I feel sorry for you brother. You have to sit in a hotel, eat free food, discuss ball all day and get paid to hang around practices and games? Damn, I do hope you get to go home soon, or at least that you don’t spend three paragraphs telling us about what a terrible time you’re having at the NBA Finals.

  • Josh

    so, everyone is talking about Duncan being the greatest pf of all time b/c he has 4 rings. Last time I checked a ring is something you wear on your finger it doesn’t show how you play. Barkley has no rings and is still considered one of the best of all time. Rings have nothing to do with how good of a player you are. He’s a great player but his game shouldn’t be defined by how many rings he has.

  • AB_40

    never liked varejo. and so doesn’t lebron he looks at him like he hates him just check out the games this season. He screws up alt least 3 assists of lebron. Z and Gooden dont attach the basket. When duncan is out Lebron should go inside and try to rip the rim off a la dominique wilkins. Ah well I said spurs in 5 so Either LeBron goes crazy tomorownight or I was wrong again. A spurs sweep… DAMN ah well maybe next year for the cavs. Just don’t bet too muck money on it

  • Redrum

    I dont get it… why people argue about the greatness of TD? have you seen the guy play? have you seen how he scores? have you seen him dominate (yes… dominate) shaq when he was a beast? have you seen him take clutch shots and win games for his team? have you seen him play the best post defense anyone has played the last 30 years? does anyone understand what help defense is? do you know how great your court awareness should be to be a great defender as TD is? has he (almost) won 4 rings? without any other HOF player in any of his squads? should people shut up saying the Spurs have no repeated hence they are not great? Was TDs fault the bogus .05 Fisher shot? was TD’s fault that Manu fouled Dirk last year, while TD was playing with one foot? Shouldnt TD have won 2 more rings by now? Should he be considered only behind the two MJs for the GOAT? Discuss…

  • DK52

    It’s like this firstly on the Eva Longaria thing she doesn’t have anything on Jessica Alba and secondly other than being on Desperate Hoousewives and about to marry TP has anyone ever heard of her? Besides the two will be divorced by Halloween this year anyway so who gives a flying f***?

  • DK52

    Secondly like it or not and wheather they don’t have titles, John Stockton is by far the greatest PURE point guard to ever play this game as far as toughness, durability and controlling all of the assist and steal records and he wasn’t 6″9 playing the position. Karl Malone is the best PURE Power Forward this game has ever seen and he isn’t 7″0. Let’s not forget people in the 90′s with Duncan in his early years and even with DRob the Spurs always got manhandled by Utah in every way possible. And Jerry Sloan is in the top 10 coaches of all time. Titles or not those are the facts. I don’t care if Duncan has 20 titles when he retires, he’s not Malone at all.

  • DK52

    The NBA needs to split some of the Western Conference over into the East because the current Eastern Conference is pathetic. You look at all of the Spurs opponents they defeated this year Denver, Phoenix and Utah all would have pounded Cleveland as is San Antonio right now. I can’t even watch anymore. Cleveland is ugly to watch minus the King and Bobbie.

  • BallingNZ

    Please Holiday stop, you’re embarassing yourself…it’s painful to read.

    lol

  • ALX8725

    I cannot think of another player who plays the PF position BETTER than Tim Duncan. The facts speak for themselves, and if by some chance you-”Karl>Tim”-people have forgotten, plenty of people have reminded you in these comments. Duncan > Malone. No contest.

  • Bryant Reeves

    Duncan is the best PF of his generation. No point in arguing about 2000 era players and 1970s players.

  • jj

    DUNCAN IS A CENTER

  • sk

    lol…why r ppl arguing over Frankenstein…..crying all over the court every time a foul is called on him…he’s good but I’ll take a young MAILMAN lol with his flying elbows off the pick and roll and the hand behind his head fastbreak dunk….If and that’s a big If they played in the same era based on what we have seened the MAILMAN all day and easy too …..f all these short term memory ass announcers

  • sk

    huh????hell is my comment

  • sk

    except for Shaq and Yao..almost every player has a slash….meaning pg/sg…sf/pf…c/pf…

  • sk

    CAVS never ever make the finals again

  • sk

    PLEASE

  • john

    like they said, robert horry play better in the playoffs. BIG SHOT ROB, BIG SHOT ROB.

  • sixthman6

    well all that was fun to read……..and rings alone don’t define how good a player is, but you can’t say they have NOTHING to do with it…..and Dirk wasn’t playing against the Spurs’ D, he should have scored 30 on the warriors every game, just like Lebron should if the Cavs played the warriors, but against the spurs one man aint gonna get it done…

  • Mongoose

    Karl Malone is known for dissappearing in playoff games, that is his legacy. Duncan lost his rookie year to the jazz in the playoffs and his ankle was injured, the Jazz were never heard from again. Rings are important, if you were the center of the team winning them. Do you think we would consider Jordan the best ever if he didn’t win rings? Never in my life did I think I would defend Duncan, I don’t like the guy, but it is obvious he is the best PF ever and if you want to call him a center, he is still in the top 6 or 7 and no doubt top 20 player at any position all time. If you don’t respect tim duncan you don’t know basketball.

  • Holiday

    KG is on the decline, Dirk? thats a joke he dissapears in the playoffs, Zach Randolph takes like 60 shots a game he’s garbage, Pau had one heck of a season didn’t he? Didn’t the Grizzlies finish dead last!, David West Who?, and like I said before either too young (Bosh) or recently recovered form injury (Amare) plus the Suns got screwed! Cough, Cough, Cough!

  • Holiday

    I respect Tim and yeah he will go down as one of the greatest PF’s in history but if rings really matter then he should be coming off the bench to give Horry a rest right!!!! You know that guy with 7 rings! with three different teams!

  • Holiday

    And Karl never dissapeared!

  • Holiday

    19 straight seasons in the playoffs!

  • Holiday

    People just hate because he plays in Utah, the Jazz could never get anybody good to come play, not to mention they got screwed in the ’98 finals and I don’t mean the pushoff!

  • Holiday

    I meant he played in Utah!

  • sixthman6

    rings raise you to a higher status….TD is already wayyy up top with guys like Malone, but his rings put him even higher, Horry is at the bottom and his rings raise him up, but he’s still short of the top..

  • spurbybirth

    bowen is the finals mvp and not only for his defense against lebron. he has been a big help on rebounds and his 3′s last night gave the spurs the boost they needed to win the closest game of the series and crush the cav’s hopes. I know the mvp usually goes to a point producer or a playmaker, but the job of defending lebron was the spurs most important assignment in this series. bowen answered the challenge and has been consistently doing his job through the entire post season.

  • nacho

    i might be sippin the haterade, but this spurs championship will always have a cloud hanging over it. the real mvp for the spurs is horry because if it wanst for his flagrant act on nash, the suns might be in the driver seat in a much more exciting finals. the spurs are great, but that play gave them an advantage in a series that was going in the suns favor. yet another * for the spurs

  • Holiday

    I’ll agree with sixthman6 at least he gives credit were credit is due thank you! Thats all I ever wanted, I mean these guys earned there respect and alot of these commenters are just raving about the flavor of the month so to speak!

  • Holiday

    And Nacho makes a good point, not to mention game 4 of the Utah series was real scetch, I was there and I couldn’t believe what I was seeing! The refing issue’s really need to be resolved!

  • DEVILb0y

    in the words of tony parker..bring out the LE Broom, sivouple…or whatever..

  • Azza Buck

    Holiday, dude its clear your a fan of Utah and the mailman and you are looking through rose colored glasses. The word you need to know is objectivity. Now I am no fan of Malone nor for that matter Duncan, i respect both of these individuals games and achievements. However, Tim Duncan is clearly a way better player and the greatest PF of all time because he is superior to Malone in almost every way. Scoring in the post, Defence, passing and rebounding is probably equal, TD is a better shotblocker, and most importantly what elevates him higher than Malone are his four rings. Malone none as a franchise player, TD 4.
    Any way ya want to analyze it, TD has him covered in almost every aspect.

  • http://www.friendster.com/sesa Sesa

    What’s the policy of commenting in here?
    I don’t really understand?
    I’ve been banned twice and I don’t swear.
    Someone, please enlighten me.

  • Allenp

    Man, HOliday is funny. I said Duncan has had to compete with KG, Sheed, Dirk, Zack, Pau, Reef, Webber, Amare, McDyess and whoever else was a beast at the four during his career.

    And he replied “KG is on the decline.” That’s classic. It ignores the entire gist of the argument. All those players I named have been good while Duncan was good. One of them, KG, is a Hall of Famer. I don’t see how you can argue that Malone had a “tougher” road as a power forward. And this stuff about how is tall is stupid. Duncan is taller than Karl, but Karl was WAY more athletic. So why are we arguing about who was taller? Shawn Bradley was taller than everybody and that didn’t make him good.

  • mark

    No way is Malone better than Duncan. Not even onhis best day. I wouldn’t even put Malone above Mchale. The Spurs would have beat the Jazz in Tim’s rookie year if he hadn’t been hurt.

  • DK52

    @AllenP-Malone’s competitors included Worthy, Rodman, Laimbeer, McHale, Chambers, Barkley, Kemp, Webber, Rasheed, and a young Duncan and Garnett. Out of all these Power forwards it was Malone who was an All Star starter every single year. That is a little more competition than Duncan is facing now. Duncan is indeed a future hall of famer, he’s great and I respect him mightily, but he is no Karl Malone. Sorry folks.

  • Allenp

    McHale versus Malone is arguable. I think McHale was clearly better as a post up force, but the fact that he was never the main scoring threat and that he played with two other hall of fame front court players weakens his overall case. I would probably take McHale over Malone if I was starting a team, mainly because I’m a sucker for an up and under move.

  • Allenp

    Four of the players you named also competed with Duncan. And not only has Duncan never failed to make an All-Star, he’s also been All-NBA first team, and All-NBA defense for nearly his entire career. So, I don’t think it really makes sense to compare All-Star records for the two. Malone has more, but he’s played longer as well. Like I said, as a basketball observer I see Duncan as a better post scorer, a better passer and a better defender. I think he’s also a better rebounder, but that’s debatable. Malone is the better overall scorer as evidenced by his impressive scoring totals and season averages. It’s just my opinion and I think the fact that this discussion has gone on for so long is proof that it is a valid opinon. You are welcome to your opinion though.

  • DK52

    @AllenP good points on McHale he was indeed the master of the up and under. No way he is better than Malone though. Malone also played with Hornacek one of the purest shooters this game has ever seen and the best Point man ever. Malone is a better perimeter defender than Duncan is. Malone was far more physical, but Duncan is a shot blocking force, and better on the block. Malone liked to dunk on people in his prime, which Duncan doesn’t do enough of. Duncan doesn’t define the word Power in Power Forward. As far as passing, and rebounding both are debatable. But as far as championships no comparison there for Duncan, but I still have to give the edge to Malone. By the time the year 2015 gets here I may change my mind, but saying Duncan is the best ever after only 10 years is insane. (Injury plagued years for that matter)

  • Allenp

    Good point on the injuries, although they’ve only prevented his team from competing for a chip one year. Remember, Duncan was on one foot last year, and still led the Spurs to the WCF. I’m going to have to disagree with you on Malone’s perimeter defense. And, on the block, I still have the tapes of Rodman frustrating the hell out of him and turning him into a 260 pound jumpshooter.

  • Holiday

    Your right Allenp duncan did play against all those guy but so did malone and in his late thirtys past his prime, yet he was all-star in those years and competed very well past his prime against those guys and still produced pretty damn good numbers! and Im not so sure Duncan has the edge with passing, Malone was a damn good passer just never really had anyone to pass to! Although when he moved to LA I thought he showed how great a passer he could have been!

  • Holiday

    Oh and people forget that with a clown of a center like Ostertag, and before that not really having anyone to defend down low since Mark Eaton, Malone had to guard alot of centers like Mourning, Ewing, Shaq at times, among others which Duncan put his height down as 6’11 do avoid playing these guys, not to mention having guys like Robinson, Nesterovic, Kevin Willis, Malik Rose, among others and now Oberto and Elson to handle the guys he should be guarding which makes me question how good a defender he really is if he has to dodge the bigger guy’s!

  • Holiday

    And I just wanna add that in the 2004 playoffs Malone with a bum knee two damn good forwards in Houston, before moving on to San Antonio to shut down none other than Tim “The Iceman” Duncan, and after moving on put the brake’s on Da Kid KG, before messing his knee up again while still trying to play against Detroit before LA’s staff forbid him from re-entering the game! Seems his defense wasn’t that bad!

  • Holiday

    I know I messed up a couple of words among other things but I think you get the point!

  • http://hi5.com TripleThreat

    Mailman over TD, LMFAO. 0 Rings to 4.

  • http://hi5.com TripleThreat

    It’s all about the Chips.

  • http://www.myspace.com/aydreeyun Esco

    Being an All-Star all those years is fine. But those are fan votes. If people like you and vote for you, you will end up an All-Star. Malone was great during his career, he deserved those ALl-Star selections, but after a while the All-Star selections were just people who still liked him and picked him. Not because he was still a dominant force. I would pick Duncan over Malone, just for his all around game. And I don’t care what argument you come up with, you CANNOT ignore 3 (soon to be 4) rings, you simply can not. People would do ANYTHING just to get a ring. Example, Malone going to the Lakers, taking a salary cut and not playing as much as he would like. All of that for a ring. As much as you would like to make it seem that a ring is not all that important, to those guys who play their hearts out everyday, it’s everything. Think about that.

  • http://www.myspace.com/aydreeyun Esco

    And I don’t even like Duncan.

  • Allenp

    Holiday, are you really saying that the Jazz made their best offensive threat guard the opposition’s best offensive post player even though he was about four inches shorter?

    Cause that’s what it seems like your saying when you claim that Malone guarded Hakeem, Ewing, Shaq and Mourning. I would be willing to wager that Jerry Sloan and Pop have both avoided having their best offensive threat play defense against the opposition’s best offensive threat because that’s a great way for your team to lose. Ostertag guarded most of the players you named and EAton did that before him. Duncan is a much better off the ball defender than Malone because he actually blocks shots while Malone was known primarily to strip down low. This is crazy.

  • Allenp

    And did you really attribute the Laker’s success in 2004 to Malone? Wow. That’s just, wow. They shut down Duncan? wow

  • Holiday

    Well Eaton retired in 93 and Ostertag didn’t get there till 96 and nobody starts a rookie unless your Lebron James! Oh and Karl was a hell of a lot stronger than Duncan ever has been helping him keep guy’s outta the paint and forcing jump shots, and the whole deal with Duncan being taller is that he had an advantage with shot blocking Moron! I guess you just couldn’t figure that one out huh!

  • Holiday

    Your an idiot, I was simply talking about the defense he played against your hero Duncan and Kg in those series! and yeah if you watched it was all the announcers talked about was how a 40 year old guy could defend these young guy’s in there prime so well to lower there stat’s from the season and the earier rounds believe me I took note of that!

  • mark

    This is a never ending arguement. It is all about preferences. Give me Duncan over just about anyone that ever played if I have the 1st pick in the all-time draft. Give me Duncan and you can have Malone or Jordan – Tragic – Bird whoever you want. I’ll take Duncan and then with the second pick — since it is all time draft — I will take Len Bias….and we can go from there.
    Not saying Duncan is the best player ever – I am just saying if I was starting a team in the virtual world and there was an all-time draft – he is my #1 choice.

    MAlone was a finisher and had the benefit of playing with the greatest pure PG ever (so as not to offend you Tragic fans). Ever – he knew where to get Malone the ball – when and at the right time. HE had good role players around him all the time to compliment the system that Sloan ran. HE choked in the finals and that is his legacy.. “The mail doesn’t come on Sunday” – missed free throw – game Bulls. Turnover Malone – steal Jordan –jumper – GAME.

  • Allenp

    Look dude, you really have a problem with name calling. Duncan was strong enough to make all-defense his entire career without ever leading the league in shot blocking. You can be a shot blocker at 6’8″, Dennis Rodman was early in his career. Nah, Malone just wasn’t as good a defender as Duncan, that doesn’t mean he was bad, he just wasn’t as good. He wasn’t an anchor defender. And, the point of email was that Malone was not guarding the oppositions best post player. Man, I can’t believe you are arguing that.

  • Allenp

    My question is why do people keep saying that Magic wasn’t a pure point? I don’t get that.

  • Holiday

    Obviously if a team wins 3 chips, a new comer isn’t the reason for there success, kinda like how The Spurs were damn good before duncan, although he did help them of course he’s no Admiral you know the guy that recorded a quadruple double and once scored 72 points in a game!

  • Holiday

    Besides Malone and Stockton, and Hornicek for about 6 years who else did they really have? and there was a Shot clock discrepincy for both teams in the 98 finals a 3 pointer that should have counted for the Jazz and 3 pointer that clearly shouldn’t have counted for the Bulls thats a 6 point shift, and that steal well Malone was push from behind, and of course the Infamous pushoff!

  • Steve O

    Duncan 1st pick all-time? Over Jordan? I don’t think too many people would get on that train.

  • Holiday

    And what pure point guards do you know of that can replace Kareem as the center there rookie game in the finals no less to win! Unbelievably great player but come on!

  • Holiday

    I would take Hakeem all day over Duncan, or even Shaq!

  • Allenp

    So, if you’re a pure point that means you can’t score? I thought a pure point was somebody who thought pass-first, every thing else second. That’s what magic did when he was at the point in the game’s I saw. Just because he could do that and average 22 points and 8 boards doens’t mean he wasn’t a true point. Jason Kidd is a true point, and he’s the best post up threat on his team and the best rebounder? WTF

  • mark

    Malone was not guarding Duncan – that was a shared responsibility. Robinson did not win anything – dude could play – no question – but lets think back to the 72 he dropped on the Clippers and remember what happened to him when the Spurs met the ROckets in the playoffs and Hakeem destroyed him. Duncan came in and won titles – The Spurs won 17 games the season before Duncan showed up — That is like saying Jordan didn’t do anything for the Bulls – and Malone didn’t win anything except a few undeserved MVP’s.

    Tim just about dropped a quadruple double in the finals against the Pistons.

    Magic is not a pure point because of his game. He wasn’t the best ball handler in the world and routinely had to bring the ball up the floor a’la MArk Jackson – backwards. I shouldn’t say anything – I am no fan of Tragic Johnson so let me bow out because all of my opinions on that topic will be biased– BIRD FAN TO THE END.

  • Holiday

    Oh my bad I left Wilt out, and thats just as far as big men go obviously your crazy to pass up Magic for Duncan! He can play any position, and does nobody remember Oscar Robertson, all he did was average a triple double in his second season! and KG with the teams Duncan has had he might have 7 or 8 chips!

  • Allenp

    I don’t think of true point being based on your physical abilities. It’s about your mindset to me.

  • Allenp

    Holiday you are clearly a Jazz fan who remembers all of the slights against your team. So do you remember that Malone bear hugged Barkely on a pick and roll to get an open jumper for Stockton that put the Jazz in the Finals for the first time? Cause I sure do.

  • Allenp

    Mark Jackson had to bring the ball up the court backing up, and he was clearly a true point.

  • mark

    I don’t care who gets on that train with me. You can have Jordan – that is why I took Bias with my 2nd pick. Bias>Jordan.

  • Holiday

    Allenp if that’s how you feel then there have been so many “pure point guards” out there like Lebron now or Kobe he can pass, geez we can’t forget T-Mac! Im not debating how great he was but it’s like say in football Quarterback’s can run with the ball so if Tomlinson throws a pass every once in a while does that make him a pure QB?

  • mark

    I would never take Magic over Duncan – NEVER.

  • Holiday

    Wow!!!!!! Nobody was even close to Barkley!

  • Allenp

    So Magic threw a pass every now and then? He ran the effing team and averaged 12 assists for his career! Dude was a facillitator no matter where he set up on the floor. Obviously, my definition of a true point differs from a lot of people’s. It has nothing at all to do with your height or athletic ability to me, it depends on your mindset. That’s why guys like Boykins, Iverson, Billups will never be true points in the real definion of the world. I can’t believe people are calling Magic a “scorer,” he could score, but he was always a passer first.

  • Holiday

    Well lets swap Duncan for KG and see how many Chips he win’s, there is nothing for him to work with, duncan has always been surrouded by tallent, like Mario Elle, Sean Elliot, D-Rob, Avery Johnson all with his first chip! Stephen Jackson, Tony Parker, Ginobli, nesterovic, the list goes on he always had a deep bench too!!!

  • Allenp

    HOliday, you need to watch that replay again. Malone set’s a screen and bearhugs the person trying to get out on Stockton. Check it out.

  • Steve O

    I’m a C’s fan but I hope you mean your bias over Jordan, not Len Bias. I think Bias would have been a great player but would he have averaged 30, 6, and 5 for his career? Not when you get drafted onto that team full of All-Stars

  • Holiday

    Seems like with the Height to see over every guard and have better vision of what was going on he wouldn’t be more than 5000 assist’s below stockton all time!!!

  • Allenp
  • Holiday

    I guess so Allenp I’ll do that but I know he didn’t bear hug Barkley! maybe somebody else!

  • Allenp

    Yeah, cause Magic played as long as STockton. It’s not like Magic led the all-time assist list when he left the league. Wait, it was! And, check out Magic’s career playoff assist totals, he’s not trailing Stockton there.

  • Holiday

    that plus Stockton was so far from anybody on the court I don’t think it really mattered!

  • Allenp

    My bad, Malone held Clyde on the screen. It’s in the link I sent that’s awaiting moderation.

  • Holiday

    Maybe he shouldn’t have slept around without a condom and caught aid’s huh?

  • Holiday

    My bad that was pretty low, I shouldn’t have said that Sorry!

  • Steve O

    rough

  • Holiday

    Oh one thing other thing, Mark I think you lost all credibilty when you said you would take Duncan Over Jordan from most people!

  • mark

    magic is no Stockton – dude is 6’1″ and had basically 2 people to pass to consistently – Malone and Hornacek (throw in Bailey, Jeff Malone, B-russ) Magic had Jamal Wilkes, Kareem, Worthy, B-scott, AC Green, PErkins Vlade, Thompson etc…etc…etc…

  • mark

    how could I lose credibility by saying I would take Duncan over Jordan ? Duncan has been the best player in the L for the past 10 years – with 4 rings (could easily be 6 – and most liekely will be before he is done). MVP’s – double double against KG – Shaq – whomever.. and anyone who knows basketball knows that my second pick of Bias would have negated any matchup against Jordan. in 10 more years people will not be saying that Jordan was the best ever — heck people say that now.

  • Allenp

    yeah, mark, you’re a little biased as a celtics fan. Look, Magic had better teammates than Stockton, but he still amassed amazing numbers in a truncated career and had outstanding success in big moments. Even when he didn’t have the same caliber teammates, 1991, he still managed to be contending for a title. Magic was just as good a passer as STockton, and a much better scorer and rebounder. Magic being 6’9″ helped him in both regards, but he still was better. That makes him a better player. You don’t say Jordan wasn’t that great because he was a great athlete and Bird wasn’t. You don’t say Bird wasn’t that great because he played with McHale or Parish. This is silly.

  • DEVILb0y

    jordan is the greatest no doubt…

  • Holiday

    Ya know I totally agree with you AllenP!

  • Holiday

    And Mark Im not sure Mike is the best either, but I know Duncan isn’t, not that he isn’t up there but not #1 at all!

  • Holiday

    Hey Allenp I just watched the video and it looked like to me Karl had his hands in front the whole time and besides that Clyde forced it the wrong way it’s his own fault the way it looks, but I gotta say Johnny boy had at least 9 straight to end the game and 15 in the fourth quarter to end with 25 he could have easily averaged 20ppg if he had taken more shot’s, and against bigger more athletic guys too!

  • DK52

    @ Esco- Actually when Malone played the fans didn’t have say on who voted for the all stars it was the coaches. David Stern relaized about 7 years ago that the NBA should be like Majoe League Baseball and let the fans choose the starters. All of Malone’s all star appearances were well deserved and picked by the opposing coaches around the league.

  • B Man

    Lang, you called it… at least you got a shout out…

    http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=hill/070614

    Thanks for the great coverage over the season and the finals, look forward to the season review and the draft

  • mark

    @Steve –
    Bias surely would have evolved to average 30 and he definitely would have hit 8+ boards and 5 assists. Did you ever see that dude play ? No question. He was coming to a Celtics team with older players and he would have evolved into the focal point much like Reggie Lewis did before he passed. Lenny would have been center stage by 1990 and Jordan would not have won 6 rings – take that to the bank.

  • mark

    Stock could have been a 20 and 10 guy his whole career but that wasn’t his desire. HE shot above 50% and is one of the only guards to do so – but he believed in setting up his teammates – hence comsumate point guard. Magic looked for his as often as he looked to set up folks.

  • Allenp

    So, is Steve Nash a pure point?

  • Holiday

    Steve Nash? Hard to say I won’t call it but I will say this, a true point should be able to defend his opponent! Damn good though, damn good!

  • Holiday

    And here is something for all the Malone Hater’s straight form the experts mouths!
    Karl Malone is arguably the greatest power forward of all time. Built more like a tight end than a basketball player, his size and strength made him difficult to defend in the low block, but he also filled the lane on the fast break and shot a deadly medium-range jumper. The two-time MVP finished his career with 36, 928 points second only behind Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. He also attempted more free throws and grabbed more defensive rebounds than any player in NBA history. He was also selected to the 50th Anniversary All-Time Team and won two Olympic gold medals. As a player who consistently delivered on the court, he deserved the nickname of “The Mailman.”

  • young muggsy

    anyone who thinks tim duncan is not a power forward because he’s tall should consider the fast that he is much closer to 6ft 10 (one inch taller than malone) than 7ft. Holiday you should remember that karl malone played 730 more games than tim duncan has (almost twice as much) and duncan is only 2540 career rebounds behind malone.

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