So I was reading an article Saturday night about the different eras of the NBA… Back in the 60s, play was really slow compared to today’s game, and defense was more of a priority. As they invented the shot clock to keep the games from getting to boring, time management became more important. Then when they added the 3-point line, accuracy was highly desired (up to that point having tough forwards and bruising centers was key) and guards with perimeter shooting capabilities were sought after. When the ABA finally merged with the NBA, a lot of the “street ball” elements like dunking and posterizing people and flashy run-and-gun styles were on display nightly on TV game broadcasts. Fast fwd about 30 years and it looks like they may have to upgrade the “50 Greatest Players” list to “100”, that’s how many superstar or game changing players have came and went.
As I look back on my life, I realize that I was born the same year the arguable greatest basketball player of all time was drafted. The 1984 draft class also spat out Hakeem Olajuwon (1st pick that year), John Stockton, Charles Barkley, Sam Perkins, Alvin Robertson, Kevin Willis, and Jerome Kersey. Then I actually watched the ’96 draft with Allen Iverson (1st pick that year), Marcus Camby, Shareef Abdur-Rahim, Ray Allen, a young and unheard of Kobe Bryant, Stephon Marbury, Steve Nash, Jermaine O’Neal, Derek Fisher, Peja Stojakovic, and Ben Wallace (undrafted but came out of college that year). Then in 2003, Lebron (1st pick), Wade, Carmelo, Chris Bosh, TJ Ford and David West got drafted and that was considered one of the best draft classes of all time. So I have witnessed 3 of arguably the best NBA draft classes of all time, each one kick-starting a new era each time. Not to mention some of the other drafts with players like Kevin Durant, Kevin Love, Russell Westbrook, James Harden, Chris Paul, Deron Williams, Demarcus Cousins, John Wall, Dwight Howard, Rajon Rondo, LaMarcus Aldridge, Brandon Roy, Stephen Curry… Too many to name.
Many are saying this 2014 NBA Draft is going to be another deep talent pooled class again, so are we going to witness the kickoff of the next generation with Andrew Wiggins, Jabari Parker and Joel Embiid expected to be superstars along with many others expected to come in and make an immediate impact?? The draft is June 26th at 7 pm, make sure you tune in!!!