I think that too much focus is put on player's height. People talk about certain guys are undersized for their position, but does that really matter? I see a lot of "undersized" players still succeed in the NBA. I think it's more about desire and skill than physical attributes, I mean athleticism and height make a difference but I think those only take you so far. What are your thoughts?
I think it was JoeWolf who brought up an excellent point. PF's who aren't listed as 6'10 are usually considered undersized, but the majority of PF's in the NBA are under 6'10 anyway. I agree with you fastforward322 to an extent (does it really matter hwo tall a PG is?), but usually undersized SG's have a tough time in the NBA.
I agree, if you have the skills you will do fine in the league. The list of undersized players goes on and on which is why I like guys like Pierre Jackson and Jae Crowder as prospects.
I play with this kid who is a 5'10 PF and he dominates AAU ball in the paint. He knows how to play with his size and is scrappy and always boxes out. There have been games where he has grabbed 20 or so boards against 6'5 posts and chipped in 20 or so ponits to go with it. It's all about the heart and desire to succeed and hustle, the players who have this will succeed.
While plenty of smallish player are successful, most dominant players have a size advantage.
MJ was 6'6" at the 2 through the 80s and 90s. He almost always had a couple of inches on his mirror. Teams would frequently put a super-D 3 on him since he was just too big for 2s to deal with. That didn't help either. Remember Bryon Russel? Similar story with Kobe. Bell is famous for defending Kobe, but statistically, players like Prince did a much better job on Kobe than Bell.
Bird, Magic, Kareem, Shaq, Wilt, LBJ, Durant, and most other dominant players in NBA history have been oversized for the position they play. It's late so my brain may be working slow, but outside of pgs, I can't think of a single superstar that was undersized for his position.
If both teams don't have the prototypical size up front, then obviously a guy is not undersized. When a team gets matched up against a team with size across the front line, they realize it matters.
If you guys want see why height matters just go rewatch the first quarter of the Warriors Lakers game tonight. Bynum scored about 12 strait points simply because no one could match him in size. Another example is the Bulls. I know everyone and their mothers wants to give credit to Drose, but in reality that team has two 7 footers, and two agile rebounds at the PF spot. Not many teams can keep up with that kind of size
It depends on what you mean by success, undersized players can be productive in the regular season, but like BTPH said, when you're matched up against a player who isn't undersized you will struggle, especially in a seven-game series. PGs being something of an exception to this rule, but it's especially true of the 2 through 5.
Look at every team which has been successful in the recent years;
2011 Dallas Mavericks - Kidd, Stevenson, Marion, Dirk, Chandler - all prototypical at the very least, several oversized.
2010 Lakers - Fisher, Kobe, Artest, Gasol, Bynum - outside of Fisher and arguably Kobe every one of those guys is oversized for their position.
2009 Lakers - swap Ariza for Artest and factor in Odom - huge again.
2008 Celtics - Rondo, Allen, Pierce, Garnett, Perkins - Rondo has great length, Allen is maybe a little undersized, Pierce and Perkins are prototypical, and Garnett is oversized.
2007 Spurs - Parker, Finley/Manu, Bowen, Duncan, Oberto
2006 Heat - Payton, Wade, Posey, Mourning, Shaq - same again.
The list goes on, but the one constant is that none of these teams had players undersized for their position (2004 Detroit had Ben Wallace, but Rasheed's absurd length at the PF balanced it out), and if they did they weren't key contributors.
In regards to Wade, he might be undersized in height, but his ridiculous wingspan, build and strength makes up for being an inch or two too small.
Saying that size isn't important in BB is just absurd. Size is a major factor. After years studying BB players, I've come to an incredible conclusion: these guys are taller than average! There must be a reason, right?
This doesn't mean that an undersized player cannot succeed, of course. But it's definitely a drawback. Wade is a great player because he's super-explosive and can go to the hoop as easily as anyone, but he would be better still at 6'6. He's good DESPITE being short.
size is factor, skills are factor, iq is factor, wingspan is factor, feal for game is factor, hard work is factor etc,. and there will always be kobe, jordan, shaq, wade, barkley, k. malone, m. malone, milicic, kwame, bowie
Size is important in some cases. It all depends on the player.Some players depend on their long arm and tall height.some rely on their skill. Does not look like Chris paul struggles
its how you used the size. just as height can be an disadvantage, it can be an advantage. How do you thing Muggsy played for so long and was a good defender despite being 5'3"?
In boxing, its more glaring of how size is used or misused. A fighter can be tall and long but cant fight on the outside....that negates his size advantage. Basically there is no point in being big if you dont play big.
in BB, some guys turn that into an advantage. how hard do you think it is for someone to rip CP3?
Dumars played in a time where Jordan and Drexler were the new prototype size in SG and there were PG's that were taller than Joe. Yet he still became a HOF player. He was just a bull with high IQ.
Adrian Dantley avg over 28ppg 4 straight seasons (three of them being 30ppg seasons) at a time when you had SF's like Bird, Cornbread Maxwell, Bernard King who were all 6'7" or taller. Meanwhile there were guards like Gervin, Walter Davis, Theus, etc...that were all taller than him. Dantley was only 6'5" and what was even more amazing was he scored most of his points on the interior and drawing fouls.
Sometimes lack of size is misunderstood, more important is a players reach and wingspan, taking for example Eric Gordon, measured 6´2 without shoes but has 6´9 wingspan (incredible for his size), altough just 8´3 reach wich is just below average at the 2. Gordon have success at the 2 because of his wingspan and outstanding Athletic profile, including his solid build.
-So, raw height is a bit overrated, overall lenght is a more accurate measure.
Take Wade for example 6´3.75 barefoot and 6´11 wingspan at 8´6 reach (3 more inches than Gordon), he is not undersized for a 2 that is a myth, he has the perfect size.
someone like Chase Budinger for example is taller, but his reach is only 8´5, and is playing the 2 and the 3.
So, overall lenght is more important, and raw athleticism can compensate for height on wing players. And a high wingspan is useful for permiter defense, one of the known liabilities of undersized wing players.
I'm a habitual reader of the forum, yet rarely have posted.
Reading through so far, I noticed nobody has mentioned Sir Charles... Barkley dominated opposing forwards for years. He was listed at 6'6", but that the league being generous. In actual fact he measured at just over 6'3" barefoot when he was a Rookie. So with shoes being no more than 6'5" he was a true testament to a player using skill to compensate for lack of positional height.
He holds the record for the shortest player to lead the league in Rebounding in 86-87 if I am not mistaken.
Charles Barkley was undersized superstar and So is Dwayne Wade, Carl Malone, Allen iverson and Im throwing in Dennis rodman, all undersized hall or future hall of famers,
"Charles Barkley was undersized superstar and So is Dwayne Wade, Carl Malone, Allen iverson and Im throwing in Dennis rodman, all undersized hall or future hall of famers,"
I think the point is, if they are superstars or HOFers, then they were in fact NOT undersized, because their seemingly lack of height/wingspan didnt affect their careers adversly. I see what you are saying, but putting a twist on it. Undersized should only apply if said player is not able to consistently win the game with the hand they are dealt.
^I beg to differ, If a 6-5 guy wins a high school limbo contest(we tried to get him to, but he wouldn't enter, lol), that doesn't mean he didn't have a height disadvantage. If a guy from Uganda scores higher on an Intelligence test than a Harvard law grad, that doesn't mean the guy from Uganda wasn't at an educational backround disadvantage. I understand what you're trying to say, but the fact of the matter is that the 6-6 Barkley going up against the 7-4 Ralph Sampson(ok, maybe Barkley didn't have to guard Sampson, but Sampson was the PF on that Rockets team, or even a 7-0 Hakeem, that doesn't mean he wasn't undersized compared to his matchups.
And when guarding taller guys, it's all about mentality, you can't go in thinking, "Shiit! This guy is HUGE, I'm dead." If you think like that, it doesn't matter how good or bad he actually is, you are going to get smoked. I'm a pretty slow guy, but what I like to do when I play someone 4-5 inches taller is let them know that they ain't getting nothin' on me. I've become a master at sort of roughing up in the post without getting called for it, and usually what happens is they get so damn frustrated that someone's knee is up their a$$ that they focus more on complaining to the refs than playing the actual game.