Friday, January 20, 2012

Michael Jordan thinks only Kobe Bryant deserves comparisons, but what about - John Stockton?

Earlier this week, Micheal Jordan made waves for something that we have all been arguing and prognasticating about for years since his second retirement. The media, fans, non-fans, kids, friends, enemies and the like argued Grant Hill. They argued Vince Carter. They Argued Tracy McGrady. Dwyane Wade. Lebron James. On and on. But Micheal kept quiet on the comparisons, mostly because Micheal knows he's the best and doesn't need to, and because he is too competitive still to give anyone a chance to come close to his greatness. Yet, with his distance from who he was growing, a part of him felt that it was time to give HIS idea of his "Air" Apparent. And out it came. Kobe Bryant. Right there, it didn't end, but the consensus definitely was swayed and questions, ideas and doubts were quenched.

But, luckily for us fans and debaters, there is more than one NBA great to compare and contrast our current lot of players to until our faces turn blue.

Arguably, one is the greatest pure shooter, one is the greatest pure interior defender, one may be the greatest of all time, including Mike. But we'll leave that to debate of course.

I chose only players in the league Currently, that still start for their respective teams and/or are a major part of their teams scheme and ability to contend. To add to the fun, I broke it down into three categories:

Skills: A player that may not have the disposition or the numbers, but have the same talents and abilities as the great their compared to.

Stats: A player that has similar but not exact skill level and the numbers to boot.

Match:This player, may not be a perfect fit, but they match talent, ability, close on numbers and have a familar characteristic set to the NBA Great they are paired with.

Championships and MVP's are out, as those are more a product of the team than the individual.
With that said, lets get to the comparisons. And please when your done, reading, don't be afraid to disagree and comment harshly.

John Stockton

Not alot of behind the back passes. Or overhead. Or between the legs, or anything really extravagant. Not many jumpers or three's either, at least none that truly come to mind, mostly lay-ups and short stuff. But when that last minute ticked away. You now that as a teammate, you had the best point guard on the floor, as an opponent, you can't figure out how you let him beat you, and as spectator, you may be seeing something that is so amazing and so perfect that you might not see it again. He wasn't the fastest, biggest, strongest or imposing, but he always seem to come through and always seemed to control the game. His defense was textbook as was his ability to pass and if their is a picture of floor general in the dictionary, it probably has Stockton's picture next to it.


Rajon Rondo
Rondo has the same skills and demeanor as John Stockton and is adding to those skills by the year, so this may be the last time Rondo is considered similar to the Jazz legend and not on par or better. As his scoring acumen increases he loses that parallel. But at the time as Rondo takes care of the ball, plays exemplary defense and dishes out assist like they're going out of style, John Stockton is good company to be in.


Jason Kidd

From young to old we flip the switch on father time and look at the statisitics of Jason Kidd. The Dallas Mavericks guard himself is already a legend in the game and sometime soon will be a legend on a list like this. Like Stockton, Kidd is one to make the right play at the right time and limit turnovers, while shooting much less than his new age counterparts. His assist numbers are off the charts and, in his prime was a premier defender like Stockton. Even in his twilight his legend is secure and stats parallel to Stockton locked in place.


Ricky Rubio 

Like Stockton, Rubio can really flourish in the passing game and on the defensive end so easily that it can sometimes go unnoticed. He doesn't shoot alot like Stockton but is involved in much of the team's scoring. He shows a great ability and tact in these area's and seems to be a budding leader on the floor. And with his own personal Karl Malone in Kevin Love, the young first year point guard is drawing parallels to pure point guards of the games past. A nice change to the shoot first guards of this era. 

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