The guy put up 18.5/11 last season while shooting over 51FG%, lots of people were saying he had empty stats in NYC under Mike D. when he had his 20/10 seasons, can the same be said about him now playing under Mark Jackson?
Is he currently underrated or he just a guy who put up numbers and not much else? And how well do you think he can play into his prime?
He is a pretty solid offensive forward and I have always thought he was under rated. NY spending that much money to replace him with Amare always seemed like a mistake - even before the new CBA.
That being said, he is one of many PFs in the league that excel on one end of the floor and not the other. Offensive stats do come out a little hollow most of the time when you are not also an elite defender.
There's nothing empty about 3 offensive rebounds per game. He's not a flashy guy, but if your double digit rebounding power forward is dishing 3.5 dimes, shooting 80% from the stripe and 50% from the field and has a skilled offensive set to give you points when needed....well, that is an amazing luxury.
Defensively, he's not a show stopper, but he's strong, physical and can hold his ground. Lee one of the best power forwards in the game, and he's not an empty stat guy at all IMO. He's one of the best complimentary stars in the league, and those guys often get scrutiny because they are better than your average starter, but not your superstars of the league. Sometimes people don't know how to scale them, but as far as I'm concerned, David Lee is one of the best 2nd or 3rd option big men in the league.
I followed he and James White pretty closely after their dunk off in high school, because I became immediate fans of both guys.
Lee can absolutely ball. Honestly, I think he's better than Blake Griffin due to the fact that he has more offensive skill and is at least a passable defender. Blake is just horrible on D.
In a few years Blake should be the better player, but for now, the only thing Blake is better at than Lee is dunking.
Lee was a notoriously bad defender who's improved a little bit. His help defense has gotten better but he is still poor 1 on 1. Also, despite being more skilled than Blake, he is not a better offensive player than Blake. Griffin has the ability to physically impose himself on his defender and utilize his strength and athleticism to finish around, over or through the defense in ways that Lee cannot which leads to Blake actually being the more effective player in iso, PnR and overall (Blake has better FG%, PPP, offensive adjusted +/- and %scored.)
I desparately wanted the Bulls to target Lee instead of Bosh/Boozer in the summer of LeBron, but Golden State got a jump on everyone and signed this guy really early into free agency. Rose, Deng, Lee, Noah and any credible SG would have been a very tough matchup for anyone.
I'll agree with that. I'd rather have Lee over Boozer since Lee actually has athleticism. He might get beaten up 1 on 1, but he does have the mobility to be a better help defender than concrete feet Boozer. Offensively I'd give the slight edge to Lee as well again because of better mobility, which makes him a better option in PnR, driving off of pump fakes and in transition.
def rating in basketball reference is not much different than Cris Bosh in the course of their carreers, Ibaka ranked just a bit better; altough KG known as an elite post defender posted sub 100 def rating almost all seasons.
Sure he is not KG defensively, but most players known as good defenders may have our impressions inflated because of flashy blocks, Lee is a good player best offensive player than defensive, but any coach would like to have him on his rotation, no doubt.
If someone said he was a top-3 PF right now, I'm sure it would be difficult to discredit that.
i can think of some guys vying for that number 3 spot, him, randolph, griffin, duncan, dirk, horford (sometimes considered a 5), boozer.....some of these he's definitely better than some it's a toss up........but he's definitely in the CONVERSATION for that number 3 spot...
Homeboy is the real deal !!!
Don't forget his passing game.
It's obvious the guy can rebound and score but good god he can't defend anyone in the post
He's bordering on elite in scoring when you factor in his efficiency. He rebounds like a monster and that means either (a) the other team doesn't get the ball back on offense of (b) his team gets another scoring opportunity. Rebounding is really important since it dictates possession.
But he is a mediocre defender.
Interesting state I read somewhere a ways back. First D. Lee was one of the guys who gave up the highest shooting percentage when guarding guys near the rim. So that tells us he is a bad defender. But Golden State gave up comparatively few shots at the rim. So yes, folks scored at a higher percentage when they got to the rim and took a shot. But, interesting, they didn't get to the rim all that often against Golden State. Golden State's main defensive problem seemed to be how may quality three pointers they gave up.
It is all very complicated, which is why this game is so interesting. I take the view that he is a very good player with a weakness at man to man defense. The team covers up for that with packing the paint and double teaming, but that leads to leaving someone open at the three point line. Lee isn't a top five PF in the league. But he is someone that you would generally speaking want on your team. There are probably ten PFs I would take over him in the league (Nick left out K Love, L Aldridge, and "The Brow"), but he is worth the money they pay him and he is a good player.