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Chris Hu said:
PAOerfulone said:

Magic Johnson never made an All NBA Defensive team in his career and his jump shot was inconsistent. He was strictly a floor general and the vast majority of his scoring came off layups, dunks, and transition offense. So in a sense, he was one dimensional. Is Magic not a Top 10 player?

Jerry West (I assume the Mitch Richmond example didn't work out? Why am I not surprised?) played in an era where there were only 8 teams in his rookie year and 17 teams in his final year. Not 30 like today. And only 6-8 teams made the playoffs. Not 16 teams (not counting the Play-In tournament) The level of competition was MUCH smaller and nowhere near as diverse as it is now. You think ANY team in ANY sport, let alone the modern NBA, will come close to winning 8 straight or 11 in 13 years like Bill Russell's Celtics did back then? There's a reason why no team in any sport has been able to 3-peat since the Shaq/Kobe Lakers and the one team that came the closest to doing it since was... the Golden State Warriors... The team Steph plays for and was built around HIM. Three titles in a row seems so far fetched in today's league. 8 in a row? 11 in 13 years? Forget about it! Same goes for a player averaging 50 and 26 while playing all every minute of every game like Wilt Chamberlain did. 

Seeing as how you were the one who brought up the "If he played in this era" narrative. You think that 60s Celtics team still wins 8 in a row if the competition back then was a diverse and as fierce as it is now where we have elite, superstar players from all over the world? Russell, Wilt, Jerry, and Oscar would still be great players, but they would struggle and they wouldn't have the same level of success just because it's more taxing and demanding to play in today's league and competition compared to back then. 

And even with that lack of competition back then, Jerry is a whopping 1-8 in NBA Finals appearances. Winning matters and Jerry certainly didn't win nearly enough to warrant a place in a Top 10 over many of his peers or successors who all accomplished and did more than him. Even with Wilt Chamberlain and Elgin Baylor on his team for two of those trips and Game 7 on his home floor for the first one, they STILL couldn't beat an old, aging Celtics team or a hobbled Knicks team with their All Star center injured. 

You're so fixated on stats that I genuinely question if you've ever actually seen a game or if you even take a moment to stop and think about the context behind all those stats you love to pull.

Actually, you are completely wrong it was way more taxing to play in the 60s than it is today teams didn't have charter planes to get them from game to game they didn't have elite trainers and assistant coaches plus most of the player had jobs in the off seasons so they couldn't focus on being in elite playing shape 365 days of the year.  And on top of all that most of the players played a lot more minutes per game than they do now.

NBA & ABA Single Season Leaders and Records for Minutes Played |

Watched the video: And I got... Stats. Stats. And more stats. I don't know what I was expecting considering it was you who shared it and stats are all you seem to care about.

For starters, I consider West a SG, not a PG. Either way, I would still rank him 3rd behind Magic and Steph (PG) or MJ and Kobe (SG).

Secondly, again, he played in a league with 8-17 teams throughout his career and the average skill level and competition was MUCH lower than it is now. How many of those role players and bench warmers will make the league today with how many players come in from college, Europe, and South America, and all corners of the world. What could Leroy Ellis, the Lakers' starting Center in 1966, possibly do against guys like Gobert, KAT, and Adebayo, let alone Giannis, Embiid, or Jokic? Athleticism, conditioning, training regime, game planning, preparation, and overall talent pool are leaps and bounds above what they were back then. Your second point just emphasizes that! All those role players who had jobs in the off season and didn't have access to elite training and coaching back then, they wouldn't hack it in today's league, which supports my point that the competition today is much stronger and harder than it was back then. Since you were the one who brought up the "If they played in this era narrative?" Outside of the greatest players of that era (Russell, Wilt, West, Oscar, Elgin Baylor, etc.) Who could honestly hack it in today's league or even the 90s or 2000s before the worldwide talent started catching up to the U.S.? Again: You need to consider the context of the stats before you post them because stats alone do not tell the entire story.

For example: PACE OF PLAY. The pace of play was A LOT faster in the 60s than even today. Which means teams and players got A LOT more possessions and shots up per game. In the 13 years that Steph has been in the league from the '09-'10 season to the '21-'22 season, the average Pace Per Game is 95.6. In Jerry West's last season, the first season where pace of play was measured, the average pace of play was 107.8! That's 12.2 more possessions per game! And the further back you go from here to that season, especially as you go back through the 80s and late 70s, the pace gets noticeably higher and higher.

Don't believe me? Let's look at those stats you love to post so much.

2020's Pace ('20-'21 - '21-22 seasons): 98.7
2010's Pace ('10-'11 - '19-'20 seasons): 95.3
2000's Pace ('00-'01 - '09-'10 seasons): 91.32
1990's Pace ('90-'91 - '99-'00 seasons): 93.34
1980's Pace ('80-'81 - '89-'90 seasons): 101.07
1970's Pace ('73-'74 - '79-'80 seasons): 105.7

The further back we go from the 2000s backwards, the pace gets progressively faster and faster. So imagine how many more possessions and SHOTS in a game their were in the 60s before they started measuring it? Playing on at a very fast pace on top of playing a lot of minutes, OF COURSE some of these guys put up these absurd numbers. If LeBron or Russell Westbrook played in the league back then, they'd average a triple double every season!

If you want to post all these stats, go right ahead. But context matters. Just like WINNING matters. And once again, Jerry, hell of a player, (which is why I have him ranked 13th behind Hakeem and Shaq.) But he did not accomplish or WIN as much as his peers and successors. I guarantee, Jerry would have traded 5 PPG and 2-3 All NBA selections for 2-3 rings. 

Stats might be useful, but they never tell the entire story by themselves because each era is different and the game constantly changes and EVOLVES. And as the game changes, the stats change too.

Last edited by PAOerfulone - on 25 June 2022