Jump to content

Recommended Posts

On 6/14/2016 at 10:19 AM, DaveO said:

An article on Best Finishers in NBA history popped up yesterday.  The topic has been written about many times in the past.  Also this latest article just lists guards.  Interestingly the top five on the list are all playing now.  I wonder if that is a function of the change of rules or the amazing athleticism of some of today's guards, or both.  If only because I am both old and have been watching basketball for a long time I saw the older players.  They also were skilled.  I'll add that imho Westbrook is a freaking human freight train dynamo with astonishing explosiveness.  Today's players are fortunate he is not as bulky as Barkley.  Otherwise I think he'd seriously injure players who get in his way.

Curry is excluded from the list or downgraded, one reason for that for him and others is that he effectively and often shoots from distance.  I'll say one thing for Curry and his finishing though; he has an amazingly high arc down low, puts the ball extraordinarily high on the backboard and very softly and can do so from many different angles.  They go in.  I don't recall that being done so frequently by other guards.  Its simply one more effective shooting/scoring skill he has mastered.  

One player who may not belong on this list, but was an *amazing* finisher given his physical attributes was Muggsy Bogues. I mentioned somewhere that I saw him play for the DC team in the 1983 McDonald's Capital Classic (click on "About," then "Final Scores" for some fun pictures), and he was the MVP in leading the Metro All-Stars to a two-point victory over the US All-Stars. Now, that does not a pro make, and it certainly doesn't put him on any all-time Best Finishers list, but it did give me a fairly intimate view of his incredible driving capabilities - he was like this little black dot, twisting and torsing through the air like a knuckleball, somehow managing to get off a shot under the outstretched arm of some pedigreed future NBA All-Star. My guess is that in a 23'9" race (which is the distance from the 3-point arc to the basket), he's one of the fastest people in NBA history. Anyway, does he belong on the "Best Finishers" list? Probably not, but it's worth at least giving him a nod.

After posting this, I went to check if Bogues was by any chance the all-time leader in "Steals per Minute," and although I could only find the "Steals per Game" statistic, he isn't even close: he's number 72 on the list with an average of 1.54 steals per game. One thing I did notice was that in the elite group of 14 players who averaged over 2 steals per game, Allen Iverson is number 10, and that reminded me that Iverson was perhaps just as quick as Bogues (Iverson was certainly faster, but I'm defining "quick" as explosive speed in the first few steps (Russell Westbrook is *quick*)). As an aside, I was shocked to see none other than Michael Jordan at #4 (!), and John Stockton (!) at #9 - astoundingly, George McGinnis averaged more steals per game than Gary Payton. I'll close with a very obscure fact: Every Hall of Famer who has averaged over 2 steals per game was a guard; Rick Barry, a small forward who was the same height as shooting guard Clyde Drexler, came in just under the mark with 1.99 steals per game - apologies to Muggsy (one of the all-time great nicknames) for straying off-topic in this paragraph.

Heck, I'll throw this in too: In the 1981-1982 and 1982-1983 seasons, Dunbar High School in Baltimore went 60-0, ending up ranked #1 in the nation by USA Today.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...