Thoughts on the NBA All Star weekend.
Overall, I really liked what the weekend had to show. All the events that the NBA provides for people are fun and exciting to watch and I tremendously appreciated the gestures the players and league gave to both the great Dirk Nowitzki and Dwayne Wade. However, I want to focus in on one aspect that has been growing to become ever so more apparent the last few years. Fundamentals are back in the NBA.
One thing I always complained about in the NBA the last 15 years was that it was run by the most athletic players that would simply force their way in the paint and then dunk the ball. The game has changed now, players have become more skilled at every position and now completely rely on creativity to win. You have to be all around now, no more signing this player because he gets rebounds but can’t score for his life or simply having this other guy because he can only shoot threes. Everyone is becoming skilled now, I mean look at the switch that the Center position has taken since 2000. Almost every center now can shoot (EVEN THREES), pass the ball as well as any guard and even handle things effectively. That used to be unheard of because centers were known to just stay in the paint and push people with their size. Let’s face it, people like Dwight Howard, Joakim Noah and Kendrick Perkins were perfect examples of that back in the day and have been pretty much forced out of any real role in the NBA in recent years after once being dominant, with only Dwight Howard and Joakim Noah still even playing.
You can even see it in the switch LeBron James has had in his game over the years. He used to be a sub-par shooter and passer, because he used his athleticism to get him to the rim. Over the years he adapted to how the league was changing and is basically a point guard that can shoot now because it’s not as easy or effective to attack the rim as often as it used to be in order to win games because many players have caught up.
It’s hard to credit why this has changed. Maybe it has been the influx of European players over the years or simply a type of evolution players developed to make it into the league. Whatever it is, I love it. It makes the game more exciting and much more entertaining to see players that can do it all compete against each other. The NBA has been changing for the better and I can’t wait to see if it continues.