Pippen and Drexler Discuss Why Isiah Thomas Was Left Off the Dream Team
Jordan Banned Isiah From Dream Team & New First Take
Scottie, Mike, and Magic, pulled a girl move. Because Isiah didnt kiss butt and went at everybody hard, they hate him. Jordan led the charge and the rest co-signed. If Michael Jordan would have said I want Isiah on the team, he would have been there and no one would have ever said anything about comraderie and getting along. I dont think you should have to appeased other players in the league in order to be selected for a team, If thats the case they should have kept Isiah off all the all-star teams too. This was just coward move, because Mike knew that Isiah was a guy that would never submit to him as all of the rest of them would.
Yeah, I think they also just didn't want to hang out with this guy for a few weeks. He was good, but he wasn't as good (career wise) as Stockton and Magic. Sure could you have made an argument for him over Drexler or Mullin. Sure. And of course Bird was not nearly as the top of his game in 92. But everyone wanted to hang out with Bird and this was kind of the perfect opportunity for a lifetime achievement award.
So Isiah didn't make the cut. And he went on to be a complete idiot and screw up the Knicks franchise (which he continues to do to this day). I think Dream Team made the right call here.
What does ''hanging out'' have to do with chasing the gold??? NOTHING, these guys were brought together to bring the gold home, it wasnt a vacation
At first glance Jordan was being a dork.... But dig deeper, MJ blamed Thomas for freezing him out of MJ first allstar game. the whole Pistonsrefusing to shake Bulls hands thing.Thenthe topper in mymind Thomas agreed with Rodman that Bird only respected so much cause he was white.
Should haveThomas been on the dream team.. Of course... But did his being a dork earlier play some part,I think so.
He wasn't as good "career wise"as Stockton and Magic???
Are you insane?
Thomas may have been the 3rd greatest pg of all time, but Magic was clearly the greatest and Stockton was clearly the second greatest. I've written two posts on pgs already: http://nbadraft.net/forum/comparing-stockton-other-great-pgs-long and http://www.nbadraft.net/forum/remembering-great-pgs on nbadraft already.
Statistically Magic and Stockton were way ahead of the field. It wasn't close. Statistically, Magic's averages are better than any pg ever. Stockton's and Isiah's stat averages for their careers are close, with Stockton ahead in assists, efficiency, and steals, but Isiah ahead in scoring and rebounding. However, it should be considered that Magic and Isiah both retired after 11 years. Stockton's averages include 19 years of play, which continued until he was 40--and his averages are still arguably better than Isiah's despite several "poor" statistical seasons when he was old.
Isiah's best year was amazing: 21.2 ppg, 13.9 apg, 4.5 rpg, 2.3 spg. However, he never had another season that compared. He had four other seasons where he broke 20 ppg, but in his next best assist year he averaged 11.1 (Magic's career average was 11.2) and Isiah only had four total years with a double-digit assist average. Stockton had a 5-year span where his combined apg average was 14.0. During that same five-year frame Stockton's combined steals average was 3.0 spg. To put that in perspective, the last time any player averaged 3.0 spg during a full NBA season was 1993-94 and the NBA steals leader has only logged 3.0 spg (or better) 12 times since they've been keeping the stat. Stockton had ten consecutive years of double-digit assists, with eight years of over 12 apg in a row.
Since Magic, Stockton and Isiah played in their prime at the same time, analyzing their head-to-head statistics makes sense. In head-to-head matchups, Magic destroyed everyone including Stockton and Thomas. In head-to-head matchups Stockton was slightly better than Thomas, though it was very close. It should be noted that Isaih usually had a much better team than Stockton when they played each other, yet Stockton pretty much always held his own. The only pg to have an edge on Stockton in head-to-head matchups besides Magic was Gary Payton, whose edge was smaller than Stockton's edge on Isiah. However, most of Payton's best games vs. Stockton came when Stockton was nearing 40 and Payton was in his prime. Their primes didn't really match up.
When you really look at the stats, including head-to-head performances, it's borderline irrational to even pose an argument that Stockton is below #2 on the all-time pg list. It's even more unreasonable to suggest anyone besides Magic was #1.
Jordan didn't get along with IT.
Jordan>IT. End of Story.
Thomas was at the forefront of the infamous freeze out, no doubt, also the battles between the Bad boy Pistons and the Bulls played a key role also, it was personal, Jordan and co. returned the favour by not allowing Thomas to be part of the Dream Team.
However, Thomas got the call by the Dream Team in 1994 but got injured, the timing was very convenient as the Bad boys were near the end of being broken up, the Pistons were rebuilding with Grant Hill as the lynchpin of future success and Jordan had retired for the first time.
...Domenique Wilkins should have played instead of Leattner
Both great players, but Stockton was better than Isiah Thomas. To bad he and M.J. couldn't put differences aside to play for the USA. But obviously they were fine without him.
How was Stocton better than Zeke?
Zeke has two rings
Stockton has none
Sure Stockton is the all time assist leader, but Zeke is 7th all time
Sure Stockton is all time steals leader, but Zeke is 14th all time
Stockton played 19 years to Zeke's 13 years.
Thomas was an NBA All-Star 12 times
Stockton was an NBA All-Star 10 times
Thomas has an NBA Finals MVP award and 2x NBA All-Star game MVP
Stockton has one All-Star MVP
John Stockton career averages are: 13.1 PPG, 10.5 APG, 2.2 SPG
Isiah Thomas career averages are: 19.2 PPG, 9.3 APG, 2.0 SPG
The only big advantage Stockton has over Thomas was he did make the All-NBA defensive team 5x, while Thomas made it 0.
And must I mention it again Stockton played 6 more years than Zeke.
Im taking Zeke over Stockton everyday of the week.
Magic was better than both Stockton and Thomas tho.
You make some good points, which I'll analyze one by one.
1. Rings. Yes, Zeke is up 2-0 in this department. However, we all know this is a team game and while rings add to a legacy, they don't tell the whole story. Zeke played with a better set-up to win it all than Stockton did. His team was far more talented than teams Stockton played with. The Pistons had Dumars, Lambeer, Rodman, Vinnie Johnson, etc. in addition to Isiah. That squad was loaded with top talent including several regular all-stars. Stockton had Malone, who is one of the greatest ever. Unfortunately, after that the squad dropped off big time. Hornacek was the #3 player, and he was probably around Vinnie Johnson's level. Vinnie was the Piston's 6th man. When the Jazz went to the finals, their average player's draft position was #31 overall. Outside of Stockton and Malone, they had one player who had ever made an all-star game (Hornacek) and he only made it once.
In addition to having a better team, Zeke faced inferior competition. That isn't to say his competition was bad--it was great. But it was a notch below the Bulls at their peak. Recently statistical analysis has been done on the greatest teams ever assembled. The outcome said the two Bulls teams the Jazz faced in the finals were the 1st and 3rd best teams ever assembled in the history of the NBA. The Jazz team that lost was rated as the 7th best team ever assembled. Stockton's Jazz simply reached their peak at the worst time imaginable.
Yes, Zeke has the rings, but that doesn't mean he was better than Stockton. By the time Zeke actually won, he was an 18/8 player, and possibly not even the best player on his team.
2. Time played. You brush off Stockton's superior career stats based on the fact that he played so much longer, but then act as though Zeke's career averages should be all-important since they are comparable. You can't have it both ways. Clearly a player that retires at 32 should have better averages than a player that plays on past 40, all else being equal. If you want to be fair, compare their primes to see how good they were at their peak and compare their totals to compile their career accomplishments. It is clear that if Zeke or Magic had continued playing their career average stats would have dropped rapidly--both players were clearly already on the wrong side of their respective bell curves after 11 and 13 years respectively.
At their peak, Zeke and Stockton were comparable players. Zeke had the more impressive single-season stat line for sure. However, Stockton had nine seasons (in a row) with a higher apg mark than Zeke had in his second best season. During their primes (best 10 years), Zeke averaged about 5 ppg more and Stockton averaged about 4 apg more. I'd take the assists any day. Their best five year stat line is comparable, but Stockton's 10-year line was much better, as are his career totals. Naturally his averages are going to go down since he retired 7-8 years past his prime. The fact that Stockton was still an 11/8 player in the NBA at 40 should impress, not be looked at as a negative, even if it seriously damaged his averages.
Also, defensively it wasn't close. Zeke had 5 total years averaging better than 2 steals per game. Stockton did it 10 times and had 3 seasons above 3 steals per game. Stockton managed 2.0 spg at 34, two years older than Isiah was when he retired. As you noted, for good reason Stockton made all-defensive team over and over.
3. All-star appearances. This is nonsense. As we all know, this is largely based on popularity and is frequently disconnected from merit. Zeke played in Detroit when it was a major market, rather than the ghost town it is today. Stockton played in perhaps the smallest market of any NBA team. It should be no surprise that Stockton was awarded less all-star appearances than he deserved. Also, all-star MVP's (a game with no D) are irrelevant in my book.
4. You claim that Zeke would have destroyed Stockton in practice if he'd been on the Dream Team with him. Nonsense. Compare their stats from the 1991-92 season:
Zeke: 18.5 ppg, 7.2 apg, 3.2 rpg, 1.5 spg on .446/.291/.772 shotting percentages.
Stockton: 15.8 ppg, 13.7 apg, 3.3 rpg, 3.0 spg on .482/.407/.842 shooting percentages.
As I mentioned above, Stockton and Zeke actually have head-to-head stats copiled. In one of my links those stats are compiled. It's clear Stockton outplayed Zeke (by a small margin) when they played each other throughout their careers. Certainly, when they were both 29 in 1992, Stockton was a much better player.
5. Overall, Zeke was probably the better player until they were both 25. After that, Stockton was a much stronger player every year they both played and he played for a full 15 years beyond that point. Zeke certainly got more hype, which happens when you're from a bigger market. But the number don't lie. Outside of a 4-year run from 21-25, Zeke was a few steps behind Stockton as a player.
To add substance to my claim that all-star games are overrated, I've added data.
Stockton failed to make the team once when he averaged 15/14 on .547 shooting. On the other hand, Zeke made the all-star team when averaging 17/8, 19/8, 18/8, 18/9, 16/9, 18/7 and 17/8.
My point is not to suggest Zeke was undeserving--he probably deserved to be on every all-star team he made. My point is only that Stockton would have had more than 10 all-star appearances had he played in a larger market.
Really the only thing Isiah has that John doesnt is 2 rings. Which is big but when u compair the two i think Stockton was the better pg. Being the all time assist and steal leader is no small accomplishment.
John Stockton- 52% from the field, 38% from 3 and 83% from the line
Isiah Thomas- 45% from the field, 29% from 3 and 76% from the line
Isiah is a better scorer, but John was way more efficient.
He's a better passer. he averaged 10 + assists 10 times in his career, Isiah only did it 4 times. Also Thomas averaged 3.8 turnovers per game career Stockton only 2.8. And its not even close on the defencive end.
He also played 6 more years than Isiah. In his last 6 seasons an aging Stockton only played over 30mpg once. Which brought some of his averages down. Overwise his averages would be insane.
We could go back and forth all day.
Bottom line is this I think had Zeke been on that USA Team he would have kicked Stockton's ass in practice, I think Zeke was the better player both have lot's of accolades, but Zeke's 2 rings put him over Stockton to me.
What makes you think he would kick his ass in practice lmao? And what does that have to do with anything? Like i said thats the one thing Zeke has that Stockton doesn't. And of course rings are huge. But alot of guys never got one. Barkley, Malone, Mutombo, Dominique Wilkins etc You cant take away from what he did because of that. Outside of that, Stockton had the better career and did it for longer. I think my facts back that up. Heres one more i think is also very telling.
Stockton 689 double doubles
Thomas 255 double doubles
Kick his ass= Murder him on the court.
Stockton 1504 games played
Thomas 979 games played
Im picking Thomas everyday of the week you can have Stockton.
I said why do u think that, not what does it mean? Try to use facts not just your personal opinion.
"He would kick Stocktons ass in practice" Isn't a very good argument.
I already gave my main facts why I thought Zeke was better can you read?
You know you got proven wrong when you have to ask me if i can read. That' s the second intelligent thing you said in a row.
Stockton may be a better defender than zeke because of Isaiahs size but I'm still going with Thomas, when you have the greatest scoring power forward and second all time scorer on your team, your going to get a ton of assists. Not taking anything away from stock as he was great as well
this is more of a moral issue than dicussing who was better between stock or zeke
im 19 so i didnt get the chance to see them play
maybe guys like indianabball or LLperez can break down who was beter for example
I didn't get proven wrong with anything, you stated your facts I stated mines, I looked at 5 different top 100 player list of all time and Zeke is rated higher than Stockton 3 out of 2 times there's millions of them out there so everyone has their own opinion fact of the matter is Zeke will always get the nod from most people because he got 2 rings to stockton's zero and played 6 less years than him.
Based on the facts provided it seems like they were pretty much neck and neck. You could make a pretty good argument either way. What seems to be left out of many of these arguments is that when you're making your ideal team it isn't just who is the best player, but who is the best fit. One thing they didn't need more of was scoring and Stockton was considered by most, even those who think Thomas was better, to be a better passer/playmaker. The tie-break for me would not have been Jordan's comments, but the fact that Malone was on the team. Just put Stockton and Malone on the court together and you've already got too much for any international team in '92.