Bill Russell is the most overrated "great" in Basketball
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This guy consistently shot under 45% as a center, dipping under 40% at some points. Great defender, good rebounder, (His best rebounding season equates to about 16.2 boards a game today) bad offensive game.
Throw him in today's game and this guy looks like he'd be DeAndre Jordan but better at rebounding and defense.
When determining how good a players is, rings are a poor argument. And like I said, rebounding was inflated. Teams in the 60's were averaging 70 rebounds a game (average is closer to 50 today). There were so many poor possessions, it was a faster paced game so there were so many shots which made rebounding so much easier. Not to mention that the people he were getting rebounds over weren't as big, strong, and athletic as guys like Dwight Howard, Deandre Jordan, Ben Wallace, and Andre Drummond.
The number wouldn't be as high if he played in a later era because there is absolutely no way that he would be able to averaged 20-25 rebounds for multiple seasons. His offensive game was pretty weak as he, as a center averaged about 45%, a percentage that would be beyond medicre today for someone who doesn't shoot jumpshots. If you inserted him into todays game, he would be similar on the offensive end to DeAndre Jordan and mostly score on putbacks and lobs. He was a very good playmaker, rebounder but defense is the only aspect of his game that I would label as "great".
I named the Ben Wallaces and DeAndre Jordan type players because those are the guys who most similar to Bill Russell's game. If anything, the fact that they struggled to become all-stars shows how someone with that play style would do in today's game. They are all great rebounders and defenders with very limited offensive games in which they rely on their athleticism. That's Bill Russell's game and back when the league was averaging nearly 119 points and 70+ rebounds, a stat line of 19 points and 24 rebounds would not sound as great had he played today.
Also, the stats were heavily inflated. His best season statistically was 1965, when he averaged 15.0 points and 24. Mathematically, that statline translated to 2015 would turn into 13.5 points a game, 15.8 rebounds a game. Factor in the fact that the Centers are stronger and more athletic, there are less shots going up, and more rules keeping him out of the lane, that line would most likely looking more like 10 points a game and 13-15 rebounds. Those are basically the same numbers as what DeAndre Jordan was putting up last season as he put up 11.5 points and 15 rebounds. He is very great passing skills, but that's really all that seperates him from the other centers that I have listed. And his free throw percentage was also pretty bad as it was at a career 56%. He won so many rings because he had a team like no body else in the league had. It's the equivelent of one team today with the talent of the Miami Heat and having 9 other teams having the talent of the Sacremento Kings. 11 rings is not something he would accomplish in any other era, especially because of the tea, that he had. He is a great only because of the time he played, but as a player, he wasn't very different from most defensive/athletic centers.
(Anthony Davis is not a Center)
Gibby97 forfeited this round.
1 votes has been placed for this debate.
Vote Placed by dsjpk5 1 year ago
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