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The Rarity of Big Men like Andre Drummond & Anthony Davis

dai-dai
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The Rarity of Big Men like Andre Drummond & Anthony Davis

It was the year 1992. The same year I was born, and the same year USA basketball concurred the world. But it was also the year that the most dominant big man of my generation Shaquille Oneal, decided to enter the NBA Draft.

Twenty years later Anthony Davis and Andre Drummond come along.

Andre Drummond

Now I know what you guys are thinking, how the hell does Drummond compare to Shaq or even Dwight for that matter. I'm not saying that there's a comparison, but there's similarities. Do people even stop and think about how Shaq was so dominate. Only two words come to mind, Patience and Discipline. The two main reasons why Drummond doesn't always dominate a game. "Why the hell is he always rushing his shots," I ask myself. All the blame should be put on his high school coach Jere Quinn. Before Drummond arrived at St. Thomas More, he average damn near a quadruple double: 20.2 ppg, 16.6 rpg, 7.2 bpg, and 4.5 spg at Capital Prep. Quinn wanted Dre to work on his all around game, WHY!!! A guy with his physical attributes needs to learn about power, not finesse.

Andre had 15 points and 13 rebounds last night vs Syracuse. On one play, he caught a lob from Napier and he jumped so high the he was starring straight into the basket. Athletically, the guys a freak of nature. Though had he patiently took shots (7-13 FG) he couldve had 20 points, and had he'd been disciplined on D he couldve probably grabbed 20 rebounds. He also let guys like Waiters and Joseph get to the basket, instead of knocking them on their asses. A big man has to throw some bows down low and power their way through defenses, something that Andre hasn't learned yet. Which is why he doesnt compare to any NBA player, they only person he should be compared to is himself. He himself is the only thing that stands in the way of him reaching his ultimate potential.

Anthony Davis

What doesn't this kid do. Due to a late seven inch growth spurt, he has all the skills of a guard. At 6'10 he can pass, push the ball from coast to coast, and he's the most relentless defender to come into college since David Robinson. Anthony doesn't just like playing defense, he loves doing it. His anticipation, motor, and ability to react on defense is something I havn't seen in a while. Yes he leads the nation in blocks (4.8 BPG), but he also does an excellent job at defending the perimeter (1.5 SPG). Joakim Noah is the only bigman in the NBA that can do all of the things I just mentioned, which is why Anthony is so rare. It is also the only reason why he's a lock to be the number 1 overall pick in June.

People say that his strength is a problem and that he needs to put on a lot of weight in order to lumber jack his way through the trees of the NBA. That's the thing, you have to know what's good weight and what is bad weight. His ideal NBA weight is should be 235-240. He would still have his athleticism and fluidity at that size. His shot mechanics show a lot of promise, which is why he probably won't be down low that much anyway. Kevin Mchale wasn't a bruiser, but he had some mean footwork. If Anthony further improves his footwork, he will be the Freddy Krueger of the NBA. Here he comes New Orleans, Nightmare on Bourbon St.


ItsVictorOladipo
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I think the two of them

I think the two of them compare more to Tim Duncan and Kevin Garnett. They're both significantly shorter than Shaq (right now around three inches shorter with both of them measuring at 6'10" at their schools compared to Shaq being 7'1") and might end up projecting more to PF at the next level.

Even though Duncan and Garnett entered the NBA years apart they were both born in the same year. Garnett was a rail thin but fiery defender with athleticism, length and the ability to play SF, he was also NBA ready at a younger age (pretty much a spot on description with Davis). Duncan was a heavier player with immense potential although criticized for disappearing for stretches and not being assertive enough. He had a slow start to his college career (being held scoreless in his first game against Alaska Anchorage and averaging just under 10 PPG during his freshman season) but eventually grew into a dominant force with the ability to play C as well as PF (pretty much a spot on description for Drummond except that he hasn't evolved into a dominant force just yet)

dai-dai
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@ItsDwightHoward. I agree

@ItsDwightHoward. I agree with you 100%, I was just stating the fact that twenty years ago today, we have two big guys that have the chance of changing a franchise like Shaq did.

This was my first post, what did you think overall?

ItsVictorOladipo
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Overall? It was a good post.

Overall? It was a good post. Welcome to the boards. I personally do think that both Davis and Drummond have the potential to change a franchise although I don't think either can alter a franchise like Shaq. A player of Shaq's caliber in the middle is very rare indeed. I've only seen two (Shaq and Hakeem) and I only think 5 players have ever played in the league with that kind of ability as a big man (Shaq, The Dream, Kareem, Wilt and Russell). The next few years look like promising ones at the center position though and who knows somebody like a Drummond, Steven Adams, Nerlens Noel, Jahlil Okafor, Dakari Johnson or a Stephen Zimmerman might emerge as a franchise changer.

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Welcome to the site good

Welcome to the site good post, but I don't see Davis as a franchise changer he isn't going to be a number one option offensively. He isn't going to dominate anyone down low on offense. He could be an intregal part of a team like Camby or Noah but I don't think he is more.

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@B Free. thanks man. I think

@B Free. thanks man. I think Davis is an exact replica of Camby, but coach Cal himself said that Anthony was further along offensively than Camby was at the same stage. I just love to watch this guy play, because you don't see many guys play as hard as he does. Whether he'll be a franchise changer? That remains to be seen.

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I think a lot of people have

I think a lot of people have to remember that Shaq has never carried a franchise by himself. In Orlando, he had Penny, and in LA, he had Kobe. It is very difficult for a big man to be the sole star of a team, although Dwight is dooing a pretty good job of it now. I think Davis and Drummond both need to be with good PG or SG's. That can make an incredible inside outside combo. Considering that Charlotte and NOLA will probably be #1 and #2 in the draft, it will be good because NOLA has gordon and Charlotte has kemba.

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I think a lot of people have

I think a lot of people have to remember that Shaq has never carried a franchise by himself. In Orlando, he had Penny, and in LA, he had Kobe. It is very difficult for a big man to be the sole star of a team, although Dwight is dooing a pretty good job of it now. I think Davis and Drummond both need to be with good PG or SG's. That can make an incredible inside outside combo. Considering that Charlotte and NOLA will probably be #1 and #2 in the draft, it will be good because NOLA has gordon and Charlotte has kemba.

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@UconnMonster711, Shaq and

@UconnMonster711, Shaq and Penny were down right scary. The also had 3D and Nick Johnson on that team. Orlando was originally going to hold on to Chris Webber, but Shaq told the gm to pick Penny, because the two built great chemistry while filming the movie Blue Chips.

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@UconnMonster711, Shaq and

@UconnMonster711, Shaq and Penny were down right scary. The also had 3D and Nick Johnson on that team. Orlando was originally going to hold on to Chris Webber, but Shaq told the gm to pick Penny, because the two built great chemistry while filming the movie Blue Chips.

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Let them do something in the

Let them do something in the pros then we'll talk

JoeWolf1
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Why work on his all around

Why work on his all around game? because he won't be able to dominate against pros the way he dominated 6'6'' 195 lb high school centers. Why work on his around game? Because he is a top 2 pick who shoots 32% from the free throw line. What more can you teach an 18 year old who is 6'10'' 270lbs about over power? You can't make his opponents bigger.

I'm curious to as why you mentioned Shaq at the beginning, I realize you're not comparing the two because you stated so, but I'll make the Drummond/Shaq comparison, because I don't think Drummond is the new savior to the NBA center position.

Even a powerful guy like Shaq had extremely good footwork and ball handling ability. He was extremely powerful, but he had some major finesse from the waist down in the way he operated on the low block. You can't rely on power, and if Drummond would have refined his game more GM's would be frothing at the moulth trying to get him, but since he is so raw there is some major doubt as to how he'll translate as a pro.

I don't see Drummond as the type of prospect Shaq was, I just don't. You're right Drummond needs patience and discpline, but Shaq was 17 until March of his freshman year at LSU where he was averaging 14 ppg 12 rpg and 3.6 bpg in 28 mpg ( the same as Drummond is averaging this year).

When Shaq was Drummond's age he was averaging 27 ppg 14.6 rpg and 5 blocks per game...in only 4 more minutes per game.

You can't pass on Drummond past #2, but in my opinion, he isn't going to be a full time starter his rookie year. You're gonna have to teach this guy how to play basketball, and not be just an athlete.

dai-dai
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@JoeWolf1, you misread my

@JoeWolf1, you misread my post. And you're pointing to the same thing Drummond's skeptics are pointing too, Statistics!!! It's not that he doesn't work on his free throws, the guy literally stays after every practice to work on them. He's rushing his shot, that's why he shoots 32 percent. Im not comparing him to Shaq. Im just appreciating that Anthony Davis and Drummond are getting drafted twenty years after Shaq did, that's all.

And I disagree that Drummond wont be a starter as a rookie, especially if he is drafted to one of the top 5 lottery teams. Once he learns how to get position in the post, he'll be alright. He doesn't have to dominate as a rookie in order to be a great bigman.

IMO, his game is better suited for the NBA. If he gets with the right PG, he's gonna be a nightmare in the pick and roll.

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Drummond has some of the

Drummond has some of the nimblest footwork Ive ever seen for a man his size. The guy will be the complete offensive package in the post, unstoppable. He needs to turn that baby fat into muscle and build up his core and upperbody strength. he also has to learn how to position himself a little better and understand where he is at all times on the floor. Finishing through contact is something he should be working on and he needs that drive to chase after loose balls. Not to mention working on his free throws amd jumpshot.

Long story short Drummond is super raw and is actually still very impressive right now. Once he stops getting pushed around, and a consistant jumper he will be unstoppable in any basketball league.

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Drummonds may compare to the

Drummonds may compare to the Favors situation in which you have a raw big man with physical size and good athleticism who has to learn the game. Favors is showing signs and maybe in a few years he may be a top 10 big man because i think with his size and being 6'11" he is in the Center range. Drummond could be like that but he may want to stay another year and come out more NBA ready.

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Drummond

I caught a good bit of that 'Cuse game and it was some of the most active Andre has been in the few times I've gotten to watch him this year. That being said, there are still so many holes in his game. As has been talked about, his footwork is the one that really stands out. Right now this dude is nothing more than the tallest, most athletic person on the floor with good overall "size." His footwork is nonexistent and that will render him useless at the next level.

And I'm not just talking about when he gets the ball in the post footwork, I mean where him and his feet are on each play. You can't get tough rebounds without good footwork. Same goes for lobs off of P & R's. Ditto tough weakside blocks. Until he gets this skill down, Andre will be about half as good as he could be.

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Okafor and Howard

Were also thought to be "game changing big men" during their draft years. Both are decent, but I think Okafor was a disappointment to many. I try to not be such a hater, but I dont understand what the point of this post is? Are you celebrating that there are a lot of talented big men prospects in this years draft? It kinda sounds like you are saying there has not been a prospect as nice as these two since Shaq, which is just false...then I think you are comparing them to shaq and Wolf hops in misrepresenting the difference in age b/t Shaq and Drummond entering college (more like 9 months differance, not a whole year) While discounting differnces in team strategy and any value that could be found in experience.... its all very confusing.. I am confused.

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Good post you used good prose

Good post you used good prose in your writing.

I undertstand what you meant completely and you are right in saying that big men like Drummond and Davis come along rarely. Even Favors, who went 3rd in the draft based on athleticism and size, doesn't compare to Drummond physically. Drummond is bigger, longer, faster, and jumps high then Favors did. That's why he is so special. He also has some skill with the basketball in his hand being able to pass deftly and put the ball on the floor.

I think one of Drummonds biggest problems is his comfort zone. He's clearly not comfortable. He's afraid to do certain things like take slower big men off the dribble. You're noticing Anthony Davis is just starting to do it often. Davis against Vanderbilt looked like Chris Bosh on offense and Hakeem on defense.

Drummond's biggest problem is that he's just plain soft. He kisses balls off the glass when he could dunk it. He get's pushed out of position with foremans by guys who have no bussiness even touching him. He needs to learn how to start throwing his weight around. I wish Cleveland was worse because that would be the most perfect place for him to land and the reason why is simple. He'd get to play with Tristan Thompson and Andy who are both hustle players that use their body. If Drummond played like Thompson does and just use his weight as leverage and throw his body around making other players hate guarding him, then he'd be dominating right now.

You saw once Drummond got warmed up in the 2nd half against Syracuse and stopped thinking and starting playing on instincts he was impossible to keep off the glass for putbacks.

@Dai-dai

I posed this question the other day but I'll ask you. Do you think Davis would make a great Center in the NBA or do you think he's stuck solely at forward because of his build? Personally I think he would be able to play Center fine in the NBA. He's put on weight nicely thus far, and doesn't lose position in the post like people think he does. Even when big men seal him off on under the rim he's still able to bounce off players and get enough bounce off one feet to alter shots. I haven't saw Davis get pushed around all year and most of it is do to his footwork.

Drummond weights like a good 40 pounds more then Davis but get's pushed around way more easily. It's a mentality. I saw Camby play in college and Davis is a whole different type of prospect. They share similarities on defense but Davis is even faster, and get's off his feet quicker and higher. And on offense there is no comparison. As Camby got so many points just beating his man down the floor, Davis can actually beat his man off the dribble. Anthony Davis has a ton of Chris Bosh in his offensive game. And overall Anthony Davis plays like how you would imagine Kevin Garnett would of done had he went to college for a year.

People who don't think Davis is a franchise caliber talent or a force on offense are going to be pleasently surprised next year and even this March. Because I forecast Davis going on a tear in the NCAA's on offense.

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What?

Coach Quinn is one of the best coaches in America. You can't compare stats between Capital Prep and Saint Thomas More. The competition Dre played at STM was far superior than what he faced at capital prep, and he had many more talented players around him. In addition developing an all around game is what Dre needs, he can dominate highschool and most college players on physical abilities but in the NBA he won't be able to dominate in that way. The knock on him right now is he doesn't have a good enough all around game and is just getting his points off oops and tips, not consistently showing a low post game. I really don't understand why you are saying all the blame goes to QuinnA, because the stats are not comparable between Capital Prep and STM.

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@MBRH My point exactly,

@MBRH

My point exactly, another stupid post. The blame does go on Quinn because he wasnt hard enough on Dre. He would let Dre shoot jumpers and threes, instead of telling him to quit it, and if not then sit your ass on the bench. Calhoun is making him work hard and trying to mold him into a power driven center. If Dre tries any of that finesse stuff in a game now, Calhoun will send his ass right to the bench. Quinn may be one of the best high school coaches in America, but he damn sure isn't a bigman's coach. Quinn was teaching him how to be a small forward, instead of a bigman. I like the fact that Drummond can pass and has a great feel for the game, but I'm tired of him not getting good enough position in the post. If he knew how to better position himself downlow, he could be averaging 12 plus rebounds a night.

If you have something negative to say then don't comment anymore. Put a pacifier in your mouth, and shut the hell up.

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I guess I just don't see

I guess I just don't see Drummond as a once in a generation prospects, like Shaq was. It seems like there is a guy every couple of years, pushing 7 feet with amazing raw tools that "has unlimited potential" or "just needs to learn the game" and more often than not....they don't pan out.

I am a Drummond skeptic, I think there is probably only a 20% chance he's as good as Andrew Bynum in 5 years, and a 70% chance he'll be very similar to DeAndre Jordan.

Michael Olawakandi was dunking medicine balls and wowing people with his athletic prowess, Kwame Brown was another beast of a prospect who "just needed to learn the game." The raw athletic big man who can't shoot, fouls a lot, and needs polish come around every couple of years, not every twenty. Greg Oden was a once in a decade prospect....he was just killed by injuries. I see Drummond as a guy you have to take in the top 2 because of that "chance" he'll develop, but he still would scare me as a GM.

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Drummond being compared to

Drummond being compared to Duncan is just wrong, isn't it?

Sure, he had a slow too, but he came out of college averaging 21 ppg, 15 rpg, 3 apg and 3.3 bpg. He was absolutely NBA ready when he came out and the fact that he stayed in college so long was basically a huge part of what Tim Duncan is.

Duncan's main strenghts were/still are poise, basketball IQ and post-moves, aren't those Drummond's main weaknesses?

dai-dai
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@Anton123 Come on man, you

@Anton123

Come on man, you really think poise is one of Drummond's main weaknesses. The guy is 18 years old. If you go and look at his scouting report on espn, Chad Ford list that one of his strengths is his IQ.

Of course Drummond doesn't have post moves like Tim Duncan. Timmy is called the big fundamental for a reason you know.

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@Mr. 19134, If Marcus Camby

@Mr. 19134, If Marcus Camby can play center, so can Anthony Davis. Camby is 6'11 235 right now and he continues to be one of the top 5 defensive big men in the league. Joakim Noah play center as well, and he basically the same size and weight as Camby. All Anthony needs to do is continue to put on good weight, making sure that majority of it is muscle. He doesn't need to be 250 plus in order to be a threat in the post. KG was the same size as Davis is now for his first couple of years in the league, he honestly didnt get over 250 pounds until he got to the celtics.

The Chris Bosh comparison is right on the money. Anthony was a point guard 3 years ago, so he's still in the learning process of playing in the post. I saw the Vanderbilt game and it was scary how much better Anthony was from the start of the season. My friend thinks both of these guys are gonna be bust, but I have a hard time believing that as of right now.

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Big men like Drummon are rare

Big men like Drummon are rare and an example of that is Deandre Jordan's new contract and the fact over half of the league is kicking themselves for letting him slip to the 2nd round. And Drummond can score, pass, and shoot better right now then Deandre Jordan probably ever will be able to do. Drummond's way further ahead the learning curve then Jordan was at Texas A&M.

I people forgot what the Center position is about. The Center position holds the painted area down, he's suppose to be the anchor for your team on both sides of the floor, but few centers nowadays have that type of skill. That is exactly what Anthony Davis excels at. Davis owns the painted area. Will he be able to do that in the NBA? Yes. Why? Because he simply knows how to do it better then any big men whose come along since Yao.

Playing in the post isn't all about weight. It's mostly about leverage. Most big men don't know how to use leverage right, or their bodies aren't coordinated enough to be able to do it. Davis' build is so sinewy, he get's so low in a stance he don't give up position in the post easy. You can tell he use to be a guard that use to have to fight with bigger men for positioning instead of a big man who use to just throw his big body around.

Throwing Davis on the perimeter in the NBA takes away from what he's best at and that's controling the game from the paint on defense, and bringing big men outside on offense.

And do you know how many college freshman have ever averaged atleast 14ppg, 9rpg, and 4.5 bpg? One. Anthony Davis.

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@Mr.19134 Yeah man, Anthony

@Mr.19134

Yeah man, Anthony Davis is a beast. His motor is unbelievable. I just hope he gets with the right team in the league so that he can play for one franchise his whole career.

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Trust me, Quinn was very hard

Trust me, Quinn was very hard on Drummond, and alot of his attempts at dribbling and shooting come from AAU where the coach would let him do what ever he wanted. And I didn't say anything negative, I was just pointing out facts.

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Do you guys remember what

Do you guys remember what Michael Beasely was doing in college?

26.2 PPG 12.4 RPG

Listen- I know Anthony Davis is an NBA player. And I really think Drummond is a long term starter as well. But we need to stop acting like these are once in a generation big men, when its college basketball. Neither of which is having a Beasely type season, which reminds me that even someone ready to DOMINATE the collegiate ranks at age 19 isn't neccasarily a great pro. Lets also note that Davis has faced 4 ranked teams all season, including getting outplayed by Tyler Zeller against UNC. I think they are both going to be fringe all stars in the NBA. But not superstars. I need more offense from Davis and more consistancy from Drummond. Davis is the "National Player of the year, by far" at 14.3 and 9.8. If he equals that production in the nba, he will be okay. And i doubt he'll be blocking 5 shots a game when he's going up against NBA bigs instead of bad SEC teams (Keep in mind, the bad SEC teams have been Kentucky's tougher games this year).

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The stats argument doesn't

The stats argument doesn't hold water with Beasley because his team just wasn't that good at 21 and 12, and failed to make the tournament. Anthony Davis stuffs box scores and Kentucky is having a historically epic season holding opponents to something like 33% shooting last I heard. And that stat is all Anthony Davis with a little MKG mixed in.

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Yea, the other 3 players

Yea, the other 3 players don't play defense at all. Kentucky is stacked. Hence why they are undefeated.

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@LastWord, K-State made the

@LastWord, K-State made the NCAA tournament when Beasley was there, they even won their 1st round game by upsetting O.J. Mayo's USC Trojans in the 1st round. I think he lead K-State to their first tourney win in 20 years. Beasley joined a team that hadn't made an NCAA tournament since 1996, Davis joined a perennial tournament team who made the Final 4 the previous year, joined by a top 5 recruiting class. I like Davis, but your information about Beasley and K-State is in accurate.

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