> Hello all,
> I have a statement and somewhat of a question at the same time. I
> want your opinion on the most dominating centers in the game since the
> 1980 and onward.
> My top four are Kareem, Moses Malone, Hakeem, and Shaq. I don't think
> anyone will dispute these are all great centers. I say Kareem because
> he was very good at many things... and his mental toughness and
> detemination reminds me of Tim Duncan and his reserved (yet strong)
I think the most "***" after 1980 were, in order, Shaq and then Moses.
Kareem was still good after 1980 - and arguably still "the best" for a while - but
I think his most "***" years were past him. He'd come in fourth of these
four, just for the period you specify. He exceeds Moses and Hakeem in terms of
career ***. School's still out on Shaq's career status, but he's getting up
there with Kareem and Wilt.
> I put Malone in there because he was an absolute workhorse. He might
> not have put up 30ppg but he would dominate the boards like no other
> and take up SPACE on the inside.
> I think Hakeem may be the best all around player of any of these guys.
> I remember watching him put on a clinic with David Robinson guarding
> him. His O was tantalizing while defensive presence was just as
> I'm saving shaq for the end because he is the subject of my question.
> I think Shaq might be the most *** player the NBA has ever seen.
> People always say... "Well... if I were that big." Well, if you were
> that big you may not eb able to do a 1/4 of the things he does. His
> agility at that size is astonishing. I think at times that he is not
> trying, but call in the re-inforcements if he gets pissed off.
> However, why is it that Shaq gets no respect from a lot of people?
He is about 30 pounds overweight. However, if there were more challenges for
him in this league, I dare say he'd be more motivated during his off seasons.
Another thing I have mentioned in other threads is the popular opinion that
there are no talented centers in the league today. This flies in the face of the
fact that most of the best power forwards in the game match the average starting
center in terms of height or weight or both. (Average being 6'11, 250 lb.)
The talent is still there at that size, but the position of center has been
pretty much sacrificed to O'Neal league-wide in the form of less talented scrubs
who can play physical and can be lost to foul trouble without great harm to their
team. There are some exceptions, of course, but that is pre***ly the sort of
player that is put in the position these days. O'Neal, in more ways than one,
casts a mighty long shadow.
Meanwhile, today's top power forwards, who in past years would have
undoubtedly played center, are being protected from comparison with O'Neal (and
from foul trouble) by playing a different position.
Another factor in his lack of respect (where it applies, because I actually
think he gets plenty of respect, on the whole) is that casual basketball fans look
at O'Neal and his size and strength and assume that he succeeds by brute force.
The casual fan does not recognize the skills utilized by big men in the post, and
the subtle use of power required to gain and maintain a desired position near the
basket. After that, most casual fans don't recognize skills like drop steps and
up and under moves. Basically, the casual fan recognizes the skill of 3-point
shooting, dribbling, and open-court moves. They might not appreciate the level of
finesse involved in O'Neal's game.