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Tuesday, October 15th, 2013 at 12:00 pm  |  154 responses

Top 50: Tony Parker, no. 11

After a disappointing loss in the Finals, Parker is out for redemption in ’13-14.

by DeMarco Williams / @demarcowill

Triskaidekaphobia is the fear of the number 13. While no one is 100 percent certain how the number came to represent all things evil, the condition is a very real one for many people. But if you believe the dreaded digit is just limited to high-rise floors and failed Apollo missions, think again. The number is actually pretty frightening around basketball circles, especially when you’re talking about point guards playing in the NBA.

Tony Parker, the 11th best player in the League and arguably the finest non-American hooper on the planet, is entering his 13th NBA campaign. When fleet-a-foot contemporaries like the great Isiah Thomas and Tim Hardaway hit that mark, their stats took a dive like the ditsy girl being chased by Jason Vorhees through the woods. By year 13, the ballers were mere shells of themselves, playing on legs that were starting to betray them nightly. Isaiah averaged about 18 points and 8 assists in year 12. The next year, Zeke’s last in the League, his numbers fell under 15 and 7. Scary, huh?

But even if you’re a superstitious resident of San Antonio, this is not the time to be terribly alarmed. We’ve seen signs in Parker over the past few months that suggest the curse that struck Isiah, Hardaway and Kevin Johnson—wait, KJ, retired after his 12th season, dun, dun, dun, dun—will all but pass right by Parker.

The first sign that the 31-year-old Parker won’t regress this coming year? The 2013 NBA Finals. (Sorry to bring this up for the 130th time, Spurs fans.) You, me and everybody with a working television set knows that had a foul call gone this way or a shot attempt gone that way, the Larry O’Brien Trophy could very well be sitting in the AT&T Center right now. But it’s not. Parker, who averaged 20/7/3 during the ‘13 Playoffs, is still a lil’ pissed by that fact. Don’t take my word for it. Listen to the dude talk at the Spurs’ media day in late September you can tell the bitterness was still fresh on his tongue. He wants redemption. The man with one of the quickest first steps in the game wants to have the last laugh.

Another sure sign that Parker won’t face the same wrath that Stephon Marbury saw in the pivotal 13th season? He’s simply playing at too high a level right now. Parker’s performance at EuroBasket 2013 last month was otherworldly. Slick runners and contortionist-approved antics in the paint usually reserved for the Thunder and Lakers were unleashed in a semifinals performance versus Spain. The Frenchman scored 32 points, snatched 6 boards and tallied 2 steals. There was so much intensity in his eyes you would have sworn an Olympic medal was up for grabs. It wasn’t. Just positioning for the country’s first EuroBasket crown. Parker’s championship performance against Lithuania was pedestrian by his lofty standards (12 points on 6-17 shooting) but it was still enough to win tournament MVP and capture the trophy—oh, and earn the title of France’s greatest athlete ever in a recent poll in the national sports daily L’Equipe, beating out soccer god Zidane.

Still, the Fountain of Youth that Tim Duncan is guzzling from has to dry up eventually. And who knows how many more pulled hamstrings Manu Ginobili can push through? The time is now for Parker and the Spurs. I know, I know. We said that last year. We’re saying it emphatically now. Parker knows this, too, and he’ll show just how much by having monster games on November 13 versus John Wall’s Washington Wizards and on December 13 against Ricky Rubio and the Minnesota Timberwolves. By January 13’s tilt with the New Orleans Pelicans, Parker will be comfortably averaging 22 points, 6 assists and 4 dribble drives a game, and we’ll be penciling Coach Pop’s squad near the top of the West like we always do.

As much as Parker will be focused on the on-court opposition, though, he will have to start contending more with age, injuries (Parker’s only played 75-plus games once in the last six years) and exhaustion. That’s just the way it is. Make no mistake about it—triskaidekaphobia is very real. Even on the hardwood. But while many a contemporary’s career was either dead or slowly dying by the dreaded 13th year, Tony Parker is still very much killin’ it.

Where should Tony Parker rank in the SLAM Top 50?

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SLAMonline Top 50 Players 2013
Rank Player Team Position Pos. Rank
50 Monta Ellis Mavs SG 5
49 Luol Deng Bulls SF 10
48 Ricky Rubio TWolves PG 14
47 Greg Monroe Pistons PF 12
46 Kawhi Leonard Spurs SF 9
45 Mike Conley Grizzlies PG 13
44 Al Jefferson Bobcats C 9
43 David Lee Warriors PF 11
42 Jrue Holiday Pelicans PG 12
41 Anthony Davis Pelicans PF 10
40 Joe Johnson Nets SG 4
39 Serge Ibaka Thunder PF 9
38 Kevin Garnett Nets PF 8
37 Rudy Gay Raptors SF 8
36 Paul Pierce Nets SF 7
35 Ty Lawson Nuggets PG 11
34 Pau Gasol Lakers PF 7
33 Al Horford Hawks C 8
32 Andre Iguodala Warriors SF 6
31 Brook Lopez Nets C 7
30 Zach Randolph Grizzlies PF 6
29 DeMarcus Cousins Kings C 6
28 Damian Lillard Blazers PG 10
27 Josh Smith Hawks SF 5
26 Joakim Noah Bulls C 5
25 Roy Hibbert Pacers C 4
24 John Wall Wizards PG 9
23 Chris Bosh Heat C 3
22 Tim Duncan Spurs PF 5
21 Dirk Nowitzki Mavs PF 4
20 LaMarcus Aldridge Blazers PF 3
19 Rajon Rondo Celtics PG 8
18 Marc Gasol Grizzlies C 2
17 Blake Griffin Clippers PF 2
16 Deron Williams Nets PG 7
15 Kevin Love TWolves PF 1
14 Dwyane Wade Heat SG 3
13 Paul George Pacers SF 4
12 Russell Westbrook Thunder PG 6
11 Tony Parker Spurs PG 5

Rankings are based on expected contribution in ’13-14—to players’ team, the League and the game.

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  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i bet you a bushel of apples this turns into a Tony Parker vs Kyrie Irving debate.

  • star

    ill add some bananas to that

  • L

    Tony Parker led his team to the 7th game of the NBA Finals and led his national team to the european championship without Joaquim Noah. Kyrie Irving has yet to lead his team to the playoffs. Can we please agree on the mistake there? Thanks.

  • Caboose

    I told y’all SLAM would put Kyrie over Tony. Disgraceful.

  • Caboose

    As it should…sh!t, I would take a Tony vs Curry or Tony vs Rose debate too.

  • Caboose

    Kyrie hasn’t led his team to literally anything.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i will play the part of devil’s advocate today. so, whenever this debate does get going, if nobody is defending Kyrie, i’ll do it.

  • AndyK415

    Let’s hear it

  • Saleem Rainman

    SMFH

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i’m not pushing the ball down the hill. i’m just going to try and stop the one someone else pushes from killing a pedestrian.

  • Caboose

    With this, I’ll bet we see:
    Kobe over Harden
    Rose over Paul
    Durant over LeBron.

    No seriously. Watch Durant be #1

  • Saleem Rainman

    So you’ve got Kyrie and Steph,Rose, and CP3 ahead of Tony in the point guard standings, so according u u guys Tony is only the 5th best PG in the L? the only one on that list ahead of Tony should be CP3, and that was very much debatable this past season…

  • star

    but arent these projected rankings? is it THAT far fetched to say that kyrie might have the better season next year?

    ….even though the article repeatedly says that parker wont regress…smh

  • LLC#12

    TP was arguably the best PG in the L last season. From 1st to 5th, WAT?! I’d have no qualms with him being the 2nd best PG after CP3, but, 5th?!

  • Caboose

    5th best. You missed Rose.

  • AndyK415

    Ha okay. Well you do agree that Tony was playing out of his mind last year though right?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yep. i actually have him as the 3rd best PG in my rankings.

  • AndyK415

    I agree. Some of these rankings man…

  • Saleem Rainman

    corrected

  • AndyK415

    What about his ranking overall?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    ok, let’s just start it like this,
    .
    the argument that Kyrie/Steph/Rose (i don’t need to go over Paul) are better is about them having all of their teams responsibilities on their shoulders. All are already more productive then Parker, and all have a much larger role in their teams fortunes. If you look at Parker’s inability to stay completely healthy, and lack of high end production, it is not inconceivable that those other players vault over him this year, without him taking any steps back.

  • Caboose

    Behind Paul and…Russ?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    9.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yes

  • AndyK415

    Does Kyrie not have durability issues throughout the season as well?

  • AndyK415

    Yeah I totally believe he is a top-10 player.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yes he does, but Kyrie has been more productive on terrible teams, now his team is pretty well rounded, he could end up having a Derrick Rose year 3 type year.

  • Cortez Mack

    That depends on what someone means by “a better season”.

  • BugEyes

    He led them to the number 1 overall pick a.thonyg B
    ennett

  • shockexchange

    At this stage a player should have some eye-popping stats, team success or both. Irving is a tremendous talent. He was already the acknowledged PG of the future, but after winning the 3-point shooting contest, it set the stage for him being considered ahead of Parker, Westbrook and maybe even Steph Curry.

    However, he played on the 3rd worst team in the L last year (partly due to him being injured). The reality is despite meeting the first criteria – eye-popping stats and skill set – the Cavs won’t play in enough meaningful games for him to be considered ahead of Parker, Russ or Steph.

  • BugEyes

    Yea every time tp and cp3 play each other. we all know.who hores who

  • AndyK415

    Okay I agree that he could. But man, Parker was the MVP before that Heat win streak and led his team to the finals!

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    no he wasn’t. at no point last season was Parker the league MVP. he was the best offensive player on the best team in the regular season, but he was not the actual MVP. nobody actually felt like he was more deserving than LeBron or Durant.

  • star

    well, as the better player… better stats , better contribution to the team

    look i doubt kyrie will be able to lead the cavs to as much team success as parker can yet, including next season . But if the Cavs makes a decent jump in the rankings and kyrie becomes a better player overall ( as one would expect from a second to third year player), i think he could very well surpass tp next season

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    you just mean that tony parker’s teams are better?

    http://www.basketball-reference.com/play-index/h2h_finder.cgi?request=1&p1=parketo01&p2=paulch01

    seems like Paul wins that matchup the majority of the time.

  • Armando

    I kind of agree, but again, I curious about how you define things. I do respect your knowledge, and I more often than not agree with your conclusions (like Parker being and will be at worst the 4th best PG in the league, the whole Al Horford thing, Wade… (on the other hand there was the Asik not being more skilled than Gortat and Cousins where I forgot to reply and I felt you only defined “skilled” as having varied or finesse offensive moves whereas the argument I tried to make was that Asik is as skilled defensively as Cousins is offensively (if not more considering Cousins paltry % and horrible shot selection (I’ll give him potential to be skilled), but also a proven contributer to wins which can be seen as him being equally or more skilled… depending on how you define skill that is, but I digress…)). I only wonder, what is being more productive? And if it hasn’t lead to anything, what difference does it make when Parker is playing a way that, aside from percentages doesn’t jump at you from the stat sheet, has proved to really contribute to championships.

  • ChosenOne

    He was the best PG in the league last season. Now, with this upcoming season, who knows who takes that spot?
    But what I will say…
    TP should be top 10 at least for this forthcoming season. He will most likely be runnin’ the show once again with the Spurs and I believe capture the 1st or 2nd seed in the West yet again with 60+ wins. You can always rely on Parker and the Spurs. Consistency at its finest. I love the guys game, and he aint slowing down after he put on a clinic at the Euros just a few weeks ago. Fantastic baller.

  • Caboose

    Well put.

  • Armando

    1. Paul
    2a. Rose
    2b. Parker
    3. Westbrook
    4a. Curry
    4b. Irving
    6. Williams (Could very well be back and Jump Curry and Irving).

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    ok, i’m just going to tackle the Kyrie Irving/Tony Parker part of this, i respect your argument Asik/Gortat/Cousins related, but I don’t want to get into that here, as i’m sure you understand.
    .
    By more productive i just mean, Kyrie is putting up more numbers. Parker is much more efficient, so let’s not confuse what i’m arguing with the whole picture. like i said, i’m playing devil’s advocate, so my argument is not something i really “agree” with here.
    .
    i’m more thinking that Irving’s numbers were being held back by having a poor man’s JR smith as his 2nd option (Dion Waiters), so he hasn’t been able to rack up the assists he normally would, and he’s been forced to work harder to get points he normally wouldn’t even be pursuing. I think the additions made this summer give Kyrie the chance to turn Clevelands offense into one of the top ranked units in the league. That’s where i think the argument that he can overtake Parker comes from.

  • LakeShow

    Durant should be #1. He’s poised to take the throne….

  • LakeShow

    Good Spot.

  • pposse

    if Rose is any less than 3 then this list is completely worthless

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    LOL

  • Sérgio

    Oh boy, Irving is gonna be WAAAAY too high.

    Also, kinda off topic, but Parker is not greater than Zidane. The guy is, arguably, a Top 3 soccer player EVER.

  • Sérgio

    And lets not forget that Parker was hurt in the Playoffs, and clearly limping throut the Finals.

  • BugEyes

    Playoffs, Chris Paul hasn’t beat parker in a series. cp3 kills parker in reg season. I agree spurs are better team

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    of course Paul has never beat Parker in a series. Is that shocking that the Clippers and Hornets never beat a title contending Spurs team?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    he got hurt in game 3 of the finals actually.

  • spit hot fiyah

    durant over lebron would shock me honestly, i don’t see it happening. kobe over harden is possible though (which i would disagree strongly with)

  • Sérgio

    No, he was hurt at the end of the regular season, and he missed some games.

  • Caboose

    Lake…

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    false.
    .
    http://nba.si.com/2013/06/15/tony-parker-hamstring-injury-update-2013-nba-finals-miami-heat-san-antonio-spurs/
    .
    “The injury, sustained during San Antonio’s Game 3 victory, required an MRI on Wednesday. The test revealed that Parker had suffered a Grade-1 strain, the lowest level of injury, and that he hadn’t suffered any additional damage.”

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    are you really surprised he said something that stupid?

  • chingy

    We all forgetting the Red Rocket. He’s the real #1 now that the Human Victory Cigar formally known as Brian Scalabrine is retired and coaching!

  • LakeShow

    hello.

  • Nick Holden

    I don’t know about that. Just because the Spurs are so damn good doesn’t mean Tony’s role in his teams fortunes is any smaller. How many more games would the teams of Kyrie/Steph/Rose lose without them? Like 10? I think that would definitely be the same for the Spurs without Tony if not more so. The whole offence really only works due to his ability to create.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    the last time Derrick Rose played a full season the Bulls won 62 games. last year, without him altogether, they won 45…….so 17 wins, you take 17 wins from San Antonio they finish .500 and miss the playoffs. I don’t think losing Parker would be that drastic.
    .
    the Warriors would have been terrible without Curry last year. the Spurs without Parker are probably still a playoff team. Duncan and Popovich carry as much, if not more value to that team than Parker does. Parker just leads the offense so he gets the majority of the credit.

    Kyrie it’s hard to say since Cleveland was so awful anyway. They were 19-40 with him, and 5-18 without him. So, while they were bad, they were outrageously horrible without him.

  • chingy

    I also think Steph has the most durability issues out of the three PGs. AND Rose is coming back from a year’s absence (although I do think he’ll get back to preinjury Rose pretty quickly).

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Steph played 78 games last season……

  • TR

    Damn, Kobe is still not on this list???

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Bryant – Irving – Curry – Harden – Anthony – Rose – Howard – Paul – Durant – James

  • spit hot fiyah
  • def80s

    U mean CP3 – Rose – Howard – Durant – James?

    I don’t think I can go Rose over CP3 but hey he’s had a year off

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    the top 4 are the only one’s i put in “order” — it would not make any sense to put Rose over Paul unless they are just trying to start a big discussion.

  • L

    Kyrie will wind up as the better player bewteen both in the future. He certainly has the potiental for it. As far as next season, it’s way too premature to put Kyrie ahead of TP. Parker won’t slow down that much this year and his team will keep on winning. Kyrie’s stats will be better but TP will find the way to maintain his stats, incorporate more offensive touches for the blossoming Kahwi Leonard, feed the post to Duncan and keep on maintaining his team to elite status in the west.

  • def80s

    At least they would be consistent

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    well lol, true.

  • underdog

    It already is.

  • underdog

    Thanks for cutting the 3rd person BS out this time, so I could up-vote this.

  • shockexchange

    Thanks for the compliment underdog. *Edit* After all, the Shock Exchange lives for your validation.

  • Caboose

    I thought Lake was reasonable about everything non-Kobe…

    I guess liking LeBron falls under the banner of anti-Kobe and therefore…Kobe.

  • Armando

    No worries. I do understand… also the devil’s advocate role as you did make your opinion pretty clear… And we agree.

    I was only really thinking about the “productivity” aspect as it’s often used as an argument when I feel it really isn’t one (often by casual stat readers reading to much into the three “main” categories – and then one can hypothetically make claims such as David Lee being a better player than LaMarcus Aldridge and Ginobili never beeing better than Ellis – not to mention the “empty stat”-stuffers of yesteryear – quick quiz to all PPG/RPG/APG (etc.) followers out there, or whoever throwing out stat lines consisting of these categories to prove one player is better than another – Who had the best season (same season):
    Player A: 26.5ppg 3.9rpg 10.5apg 2.2spg
    Player B: 20.4ppg 2.3rpg 5.5apg 1.1spg

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Uhm as soon as he accepted that Kobe was inferior, Durant became his focus. He argued against LeBron all season last year. Even after February. An intelligent LeBron/Kobe related opinion just is not in his wheelhouse.

  • davidR

    78 games, but there were many times you’d hold your breath when he tweaked his ankle. i’m still not sold that he’s over the ankle issues

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    He will never be over them. Once you blow up your ankle, it’s fragile for life.

  • Mk

    I think Rose, Howard and Kobe are being projected too high. All coming off injury with tons of question marks about their game, new players and rust. In my opinion the list would go: (based on who’s left)
    Kobe
    Rose
    Howard
    Curry
    Kyrie
    Melo
    Harden
    Cp3
    Durant
    Lebron

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Lol, Yo look……

    @mynewhate: Active players career win shares:
    1. KG 187.20
    2.TD 184.21
    3. Dirk 173.90
    4. Kobe 173.33
    5. Lebron 152.60

  • Caboose

    That’s nuts….I think TD might pass KG this year….

  • http://www.netstakeover.com/ Anthony Dixon

    I think Kawhi Leonard should be higher than Parker.

  • Caboose

    Uh huh. Why?

  • Caboose

    Defend that ranking, I’ll wait.

  • pposse

    he was the 2nd best basketball player in the league/ arguably the best when he left the game. Now presuming he is back healthy, his projection should really be no less. However, Durant stepped his game up since 2011 and its not implausible for him to have surpassed d rose. Other than that, as this should be a projection of what will happen by the end of the 13-14 season, D Rose imo will easily hold down a top 5 spot and most likely will be vying for best baller in the league/ MVP accolades etc.

    But it all honesty Caboose that first comment i made was just sarcasm to begin with. I’m already fully aware that there is a 95% chance Slam drops the ball and puts CP over D Rose and hell a 50 50 chance that they might just put Durant in over Lebron.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    “he was the 2nd best basketball player in the league/ arguably the best when he left the game.”

    LOL, wut? is his MVP how you come up with that?

  • http://www.netstakeover.com/ Anthony Dixon

    i think he will be a bigger threat and have a bigger impact on the Spurs success.. Great upside too but i understand why people will disagree

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    that says a lot about KG’s teammates throughout his career either way. Duncan has literally the best win % in professional sports since he came into the NBA. And still, statistically, has less win shares than Garnett

  • pposse

    nope…W/L team record more than anything, winning records and monster stats against formidable foes, and the teams stellar defensive rankings. After that, it was all but written in stone when the bulls lost 4/5 without D Rose to an 8th seed first rd of the playoffs.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    A is Michael Adams…..that i know, everyone uses that season
    B is Joe Dumars?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    uhm, how does any of that prove he’s better than LeBron and Durant? or Dwight Howard? Orlando went from a contender to a bottom dweller……not an 8 seed.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Dwight is not a question mark….lol, that’s a guarantee. Everyone knows what was going on with Dwight towards the end of last season had nothing to do with health, he was fine by March, the shoulder was just a nagging thing, not something that affected performance more than his sh*tty attitude. He’s happy in Houston. So….. he’ll be normal again.

    Rose and Kobe i agree, although i’m fairly certain Rose will be as good or better than when he went down. The problem with that is, he was already overrated to begin with by a good amount of people.

  • pposse

    The only way he can prove he is better than Lebron is by beating him and getting a championship. The ‘arguably’ part i was referring to would have immediately happened had the bulls disposed of the Heat that year in the conf. finals.
    DH stands to prove your theory this year on what actually is more impressive …to improve a good team to a great team or a bad team into a decent team. I’m more impressed with the former, but right now I have about 0 faith in DH taking this Rocket team who has size and depth very far in the playoffs.

    Durant improved the most and to me is the most unique out of all 4 guys mentioned. Scoring is the most direct and crucial way to effect a basketball game and KD can do that probably better than anyone, you may not agree but that alone gets him rights into the top 5 debate, he is top 3 at this point because he has picked his game up big time since 2010. I really believe there are a lot of similarities in the way Rose, DH, Lebron plays…If Lebron coudln’t see over the defense with his height he is built to do exactly what Rose does. Rose has shown his willingness to pass and is pretty much a Lebron Jr in stature and is not nearly as ‘stupd’ as some claim he is…if he was Lebron’s height and blessed with 2 other versatile players in their primes, i firmly believe he would play the exact same way Lebron plays now (without the ego).

    And who am I kidding, DH is nothing like those two, well maybe if he wasn’t such a child or if bron and rose grew to 6’11 and then turned into one.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    that’s fine if you want to argue him as a top 3 player (because 1 & 2 aren’t really debatable imo) my issue is just with you saying arguable that he was the best, but definitely 2nd. because he sure wasn’t. He was approaching the argument as top 3, challenging Durant for top 2, but he hasn’t gotten there yet. imo.
    .
    i was most disappointed because he blew out his knee right when he was starting to be a consistently good to very good defensive player. which i always felt was an underlying issue with his game, he would spend so much energy on offense his defense would suffer (conveniently he had Thibs system backing him up, so that didn’t really hurt the team to much), which while not really a big deal in the grand scheme of things, was still an important factor in the “best in the game” conversation.

  • Nick Holden

    Yeah but in the Chicago case you can’t really only contribute it to Rose being out. Many of their players were dealing with injuries and other impact players like Asik and Korver were gone as well. And while Butler emerged, Hamilton was terrible.

    And I guess you are right in regards to Curry, he really was fantastic last season and very important to their team. The reason we think of the Warriors as being so awesome is still their playoff run, and while Curry definitely had a lot to do with that as well it was also largely due to the performances of Barnes and Bogut. Their team this year could probably make the playoffs without curry (if Bogut is healthy)

    Kyrie I just can’t accept being ranked above Parker. Hasn’t lead his team to anything, hast proved he can stay healthy and he is a complete wreck on defense. Now, many PG’s really emerge in their third year so I might be wrong, but no way I would rather have Kyrie comming into this season.

  • Mk

    Well I’m glad you agree with me about Rose being overrated. They’re very few people out there who feel that way. I just think I guy, coming off a ACL tear, shouldn’t be replicating the same reckless style of basketball. If he came back and was showing a whole new permitter game, I’d feel totally different. Lastly, the east is a lot tougher now and the he’ll have his hands full almost every night guarding opposing Pg’s. Bulls fans are delusional in thinking he’s just going to be catapult back to 25 and 7.7.

    As for Dwight; I think he’s also overrated. He’s an undersized center with limited post moves, horrible foul shooting and no jump shot. He stuffs the stat sheet though and will likely lead the league in rebounds. I’d take Kevin Love and Marc Gasol over Howard.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i mean, i urge you to filter Chicago’s roster by “mpg” and look at the games played next to each player

    http://www.basketball-reference.com/teams/CHI/2011.html

    that 62 win team was anything but healthy. and they still won 62, Rose was freaking awesome (my argument that Parker should be ahead of Rose is solely based on who did more last season, and how far San Antonio got).

    – in regards to Curry, i’m going to gush over him whenever he goes on this list. so, you’ll have another crack at my opinion then.

    — Kyrie is purely a projection. And eventually he will be better than Parker has ever been. So i don’t blame SLAM even if they did jump the gun.

  • pposse

    and you hit the nail on the head, Rose really was slowly becoming a real problem on the defensive end. PG’s were not scoring not playing efficiently, not contributing to won games against the bulls in 2011. Obviously a combination of both as far as rose and thibs system goes but rose was on the cusp of getting national credit for his defensive efforts.

    The arguable part for best would have carried legitamate weight if the bulls beat Miami in 2011 and then the thunder for the chip. I can still make the argument although admittedly ‘weak’ cause the torn acl didn’t allow the dream to actually happen.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i do think Rose will put up something close to 25 and 8 per 36 minutes. i just don’t think he’ll play that many minutes.

    you can think that all you want about Dwight but you are in the minority. even with being undersized, having limited post moves, being a terrible foul shooter, he’s still far and away the most effective Center in the league. And his defense is significantly further ahead of everyone else’s when he’s at the top of his game. In reality, his MVP season was taken by the Derrick Rose narrative season, that season is a perfect example of just how truly dominate that guy was. Well, that, and the year he led Orlando to the finals averaging, 20 and 15 on 60% shooting with Hedo freaking Turkoglu as his 2nd best player.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yeah sure, but that didn’t happen…you can’t say something that never happened is arguable. what happened is, LeBron put the clamps on Derrick Rose throughout every 4th quarter that he needed to in that series and put the stamp on Derrick Rose as a player with a long way to go. Which is not an insult or anything, it’s just what all young players eventually go through. LeBron went through it with San Antonio in 07, for example.

  • pposse

    ** that was in 2010. Im talking about 2011 when he tore his acl in game 1 of the first rd. Its fair to speculate what coulda would shoulda happened in 2011 bc it wasn’t the bulls losing to another team that did them in, it was the bulls losing d rose via injury.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    he tore his ACL in 2012 dude…..and he was worse in that season than he was the year before….in terms of overall output
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    basically his improvements on defense took away from his offense.
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    as i was trying to say, he was starting to put it all together. but hadn’t gotten there yet.

  • pposse

    well replace everything i said with 2012 thats what i meant instead of 2011. In 2012 the bulls defense agaisnt pg’s was getting ridiculous.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    yeah, but Rose was less efficient from the field, and the teams offense was less productive as a whole……that’s what i’m saying, he didn’t put it all together. one aspect of his game was still suffering for the other, albeit slightly. that’s still important given the context of this conversation.

  • vannshy

    I’m remembering a quote someone said a long time ago here: “I think Rose has actually surpassed Kobe when it comes to the Army of Unreasonably Enthusiastic Supporters.”

  • Mk

    Haha ok man. Playing the game of what _____ did years ago is stupid and can go on all day. And stop fabricating, he isn’t far in away above other centers. PER last year was 19 (11th among Centers). There are a lot of Pf/C’s now and he’ll have his hands full. Lopez, Drummond, Monroe, Cousins, Love, Hibbert, Noah Mcgee, Jefferson, Aldridge, Gasol, Sanders, Valacunias, Vucevic, Pekovic, Gortat, Favors etc. This isn’t 2009 anymore. There’s a reason a few of the all time great centers don’t like him (Shaq, Kareem etc).

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    you do realize Dwight Howard is 27 years old right? you judge by injury plagued seasons where he was completely unhappy and act like he’s past his prime or something all you want….that makes way more sense.
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    his PER from 2009 through 2012 was 25.0 by the way.
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    one season of a PER of 19.4, and you draw up that awful conclusion? let’s just ignore everything else shall we?

  • Armando

    Right, I assumed you would know. Thought the Michael Adams season might be too easy (although “everyone” – now I really think you’re overestimating most commentators on this forum), should perhaps have used another season and other players, that’s just the most extreme example, but there’s plenty to choose from, Kiki Vandeweghe, Cedric Ceballos, Purvis Short, Mike Mitchell, Shareef Abdur-Rahim all put up season with pretty nice stat lines without achieving much else…) but the question wasn’t really aimed at you ;) …Adams was nothing but stats on a crazy Nuggets team that won 20 games or something, scored a gazillion ppg and gave up a fantazillion… Dumars played point half that season for a very good Pistons team, was 3rd team All-NBA, 2nd All-D and an all-star… just trying to “prove” a point.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    oh, nobody here was going to get that man. i ran the Michael Adams season by twitter and only one person guessed (it was ProHoopsHistory so he got it right, but still).

    i just mean when people use that argument that’s the counter argument i’ve always seen. although around here i don’t know if anyone has ever used it, my bad. exaggerating is a problem i can’t seem to escape.

  • danpowers

    id have him slightly higher. i will always wonder how many assists per game he wouldve put up while playing for a team sharing the ball less than the spurs.

  • Armando

    Really, I didn’t expect many to know it, but one? Oh, well, it’s an age thing I guess… I’ve even got young guys I play pick up ball with who are amazed when I tell them about early-mid 00s Garnett and Kidd…

  • danpowers

    second best individually, but most successful down the stretch tho. still underrated throughout his whole career.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i’m one of the older dudes around here and i’m 26..gotta think, Michael Adams came before some of these guys were even born. and even less of them actually do study/know the history of the league.

  • danpowers

    appropriate order. id have anthony lower tho. as far as i know his shoulder will be likely to get hurt again as a result of refusing surgery. expect big drama in the big apple this year.

    btw thanks for you advice. that helped me more to get back on track than any tutorials mentioning a ton of advices at the same time.

    i just still dont get my elbow under the ball properly while shooting in game. doesnt rlly feel stable, n i still dont get that fixed. guess some guys r really just not born to shoot the damn ball lol

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    you mean you are bowing your elbow on your follow through? (just as a drill) try and rub your hip bone with your shooting elbow on the way up. start with the ball on your hip, take a step forward with your right leg and shoot (if you are right handed, left if left handed) and on the way up try and brush your elbow on your hip —- it’s going to feel really weird, but just do that until you start to feel the difference elbow wise, then let me know how that goes, and i’ll explain the next step if you want me to.

  • danpowers

    yes, its bowing out and i guess thats the main issue. even when i shoot 1000 a day (got a long vacation lol) this still happens.

    sure, that’d be great. will do that my next day “in the office”.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    it’s going to bow slightly depending on the natural motion of your arm, so don’t be too hard on yourself if it’s not straight like Steph Curry. the idea is for the motion to be fluid, the more bowed your elbow the less likely you are to avoid hitches and extra movement.
    .
    a good example of a guy who basically does that drill on every jumper if you want to see a test case is Kevin Martin. Watch him shoot a little bit on youtube before you go out and put up shots (but don’t copy him lol, just hold onto the foundation).
    .
    also, i obviously have never seen you shoot, so i’m basically trouble shooting. your issue may have more to do with your wrist and how you hold the ball then your elbow. that might be why your problem (specifically if it is more an issue on the release) is something you can’t figure out how to fix.

  • Dundler

    No, SLAM, no. There is no way Parker is not a top ten player in the NBA, and there is no argument that could convince me otherwise. He was absolutely carving the Heat in the finals, and did in the same in Eurobasket.
    He is P**sed! Motivated, what on earth would suggest to you he’s not top ten? Not a chance

  • Dundler

    Yeah, I’d understand too

  • BugEyes

    Clippers have enough talent to do so. clippers played the spurs either last year or the year before that where the spurs were injured and weren’t playing well and still couldn’t beat them, partly because Paul couldn’t stay in front of him with there redo screen offense

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    If you thought that before this year then you are crazy

  • BugEyes

    just having Chris Paul is enough, he is that good. look how good he made that new Orleans team, they challenged the spurs more in the playoffs than the clippers add blake and jaml crawford. Deandre they have the talent to beat the sours

  • Sergio

    Lets not forget that Paul had a pretty good roster with the Hornets in 2008: West (All Star), Chandler, Stojackovic and Mo Pete.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Let’s actually remember the condition the players were in, and how good they were at the time, not at one point at a different time in their careers

  • danpowers

    thanks, will do so.

    “your issue may have more to do with your wrist and how you hold the ball then your elbow. that might be why your problem(…)”

    yes, this feeling is odd and sometimes doesnt feel natural. thats scary lol. you really know what youre talking about

  • Caboose

    KG has also played 6500 more minutes though…
    But yes, KG willed a lot of sh!tty teams way further than they should have gone. Check out their career WS/48 though. Timmy’s got a good lead there.

  • Caboose

    “Kyrie will be better than Parker has ever been.” In terms of what? I’ll fight you on this one.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    How good he will be at his peak…..go ahead, Kyrie is way better than you think he is

  • Caboose

    You know that in between his first and second season, his PER, Ortg, Drtg, and WS/48 all stayed EXACTLY the same, right?

  • Caboose

    BTW, young guy here who knew the Michael Adams season… :)

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Yep, no sophomore slump despite being in the exact position that normally breads them. He’s going to be a top 3 pg here within the next 2 years if things keep progressing in Cleveland. I just wish they held strong as a rebuilding team for one more season, but can’t always get what you want. He’s going to be awesome if he stays healthy

  • Caboose

    I just don’t buy it. His defense really hasn’t progressed (in my eye anyways), and his playmaking is average for good point guards. He will be an elite scorer, I don’t doubt that. But why will that ever put him above Curry?

  • The Fury

    Now I’m pissed!!! Kyrie’s a Top 10 player this coming season?!?!

  • Caboose

    Somehow.

  • Caboose

    I hope that was intended as a joke…

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Basically just take off your guide hand, hold the ball like you would right before raising for your release.

    - make sure there is space between your palm and the ball
    - if you would release make sure the center of the ball is in line with the center of your hand/wrist after follow through. Think of the middle finger as the normal point for your average person.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Well we will see eventually. I’m wagering sooner than later, but probably not immediately. How’s that for a definitive statement.

  • danpowers

    excuse me, “Think of the middle finger as the normal point for your average person.” person?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Lol……Human being?

  • danpowers

    lol oh my, i didnt get it. so you mean middle finger lays on the center of the ball, in line with wrist / hand on the point right b4 release?

    if you dont mind ill get smbdy during the we to film my shot n somehow get tht to you lol

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    In essence your follow through, after release, should be in the direct line of your shot. So assuming you don’t have a slightly bend wrist/forearm/elbow/hand/whatever, that would presumably be your middle finger. .
    It’s just a way to know you are or aren’t shooting the ball straight.

  • danpowers

    okay thanks, i will get into that tomorrow in the gym.

    btw: what are you doin here? aint watching the suns game?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Just email on my phone. Not really different than a text message. And nah, I’m watching Grimm haha crazy Germans

  • danpowers

    okidoki, will do so whenever i get that done. i didnt watch that series yet, but i highly doubt it has much to do with those grimm’s fairy tales lol.

    spoiler alarm:

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    1 point game, 38 seconds to go. worth switching the channel lol

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    The characters are based on the Grimm tales supposedly. Some are for sure. I doubt all of them

  • danpowers

    will give it a shot some day n have a look at how my crazy landsmen are being illustrated. am out now, gn8 fam

  • Caboose

    Haha you’re sleeping on the fence, Tim.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Majestically

  • Armando

    Well, I’m ancient then. And to be honest I only remember Michael Adams as a decent but regressing mostly-back-up-point guard with the Bullets, Hornets and Bulls in the mid-nineties.

  • Dingo

    I think this pick is wrong but I still have faith in Slam, no one could possibly argue a case for Durant over Lebron – if they do I’ll just laugh and consider it just a marketing ploy and never bother with the top 50 again.

    Rose over Paul, I can see that happening.

  • pposse

    key word ‘Enthusiastic’ everyone here is a fan first right?!

  • Darksaber

    Good to see the top 50 didn’t have any controversial picks this y…..
    spoke too soon.
    TP9 is top 10 on the planet let alone the NBA.

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » Top 50: Kyrie Irving, no. 9

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  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » Top 50: Derrick Rose, no. 7

  • Irfan

    Tony Parker has been top 5 the last two years, he certainly was the best player in the West in the 2013 Playoffs… ranking him outside of the top 10 to include a Stephen Curry, a Dwight Howard and a even Kyrie Irving (defense? playoffs?) above him is straight xenophobia, some stupid US-pride.
    You’ve done better, SLAM, and we know you should do better.

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