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TOPIC: Do we really need a center?

Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288134

  • Beast of the East
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I had a neighbor who played college ball, and whose son was a pretty good HS player in his own right. I remember running into him on the AAU circuit once, and watching a game together he commented, "Basketball is a game that is pretty unforgiving when it comes to lack of height"

Yes, the game has evolved. Big men can handle the ball in the open court, shoot from three, and play away from the basket. In college, great teams with some depth can get away with not going 6'8 and above across their front line, and can create problems for opposing defenses that aren't as agile.

All that being said, the preference is to have big guys who can rebound, and who aren't giving away 40 pounds and 6 inches against 6ft 11" centers . Ponds may have outrebounded Owens, but other than saying Ponds was a good rebounder for his size, size less about Ponds and more about Owens inability to be dominant paint player.

Yes, you can win with a deep and talented team without dominant big men, but the preference is to have a center who has size, strength, and some ability.
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Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288138

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Beast of the East wrote: I had a neighbor who played college ball, and whose son was a pretty good HS player in his own right. I remember running into him on the AAU circuit once, and watching a game together he commented, "Basketball is a game that is pretty unforgiving when it comes to lack of height"

Yes, the game has evolved. Big men can handle the ball in the open court, shoot from three, and play away from the basket. In college, great teams with some depth can get away with not going 6'8 and above across their front line, and can create problems for opposing defenses that aren't as agile.

All that being said, the preference is to have big guys who can rebound, and who aren't giving away 40 pounds and 6 inches against 6ft 11" centers . Ponds may have outrebounded Owens, but other than saying Ponds was a good rebounder for his size, size less about Ponds and more about Owens inability to be dominant paint player.

Yes, you can win with a deep and talented team without dominant big men, but the preference is to have a center who has size, strength, and some ability.


You definitely can't coach height. I would have to go back through recent history to find teams that were small and successful in college. In the NBA the Warriors play most of the game without a true center. I realize Durant is at least 6'9 and has a wingspan of a 7' but he certainly isn't a center. The other four that get most of the minutes are Green 6'7, Iguedala 6'6, Thompson 6"7 and Curry 6"3. I think that is how Mullin sees the game.

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Last edit: by Andrew.

Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288141

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You can't consider us a small team.Ft line can go 6-5- 6-8,6-9 6-10 guards 6-2 6-6 6-4 We have so many good shooters that really rebound well,that a true center will not be an issue. Many true centers become a liabilty in speed ,ball handling and foul shooting etc
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Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288143

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You can win small, you can win big; it is about players, not size. Does a tall player who can play have certain advantages, certainly. My favorite team of all time, the NY Knicks of 1969-1970 -

Starting 5 -
Willis Reed 6'9''
Dave Debusschere 6'6''
Bill Bradley 6'5'
Walt Frazier 6'4'''
Dick Barnett 6'4''

Principal reserves
Cazzie Russell 6'5''
Mike Riordan 6'4''
Dave Stallworth 6'7''

Other reserves (got some court time)
Nate Bowman 6'10''
Don May 6'4''

Very small team by any standard - league with Chamberlain, Jabbar to throw out a couple of names. Height is a good thing, not arguing it isn't, but having players who can play and play as a team is much more important. There are others, Cowens' Celtic teams were small with forwards who couldn't jump but could rebound just to name another. The first UCLA championship team with Walt Hazzard was very small if I remember right. Aging myself with the teams I reference but there it is....................................
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Last edit: by Logen.

Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288160

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Logen wrote: You can win small, you can win big; it is about players, not size. Does a tall player who can play have certain advantages, certainly. My favorite team of all time, the NY Knicks of 1969-1970 -

Starting 5 -
Willis Reed 6'9''
Dave Debusschere 6'6''
Bill Bradley 6'5'
Walt Frazier 6'4'''
Dick Barnett 6'4''

Principal reserves
Cazzie Russell 6'5''
Mike Riordan 6'4''
Dave Stallworth 6'7''

Other reserves (got some court time)
Nate Bowman 6'10''
Don May 6'4''

Very small team by any standard - league with Chamberlain, Jabbar to throw out a couple of names. Height is a good thing, not arguing it isn't, but having players who can play and play as a team is much more important. There are others, Cowens' Celtic teams were small with forwards who couldn't jump but could rebound just to name another. The first UCLA championship team with Walt Hazzard was very small if I remember right. Aging myself with the teams I reference but there it is...................................

Logen, that 1969-1970 Knick team is also my favorite team of all time. In fact, the only other sports team that comes close to SJU in terms of my allegiance over the years is the Knicks. It's probably been harder being a Knick fan than a Johnnie for the past 18 or so years, but neither has been great. I have fond memories of watching the Knicks - Bullets playoff series that year on cable TV in a bar on the East side of NYC just over the 59th street bridge from Queens as an underage 17 year old.

In terms of the whole do you need a center argument though I'd say this. Willis Reed was 6'9 and 235 lbs and while he was undersized in comparison to Wilt & Kareem (everyone was), he was a center by position all through college and the pros and comparable in size to the Knicks two biggest Eastern Conference rival centers during his best years , Russell/Cowens for the Celts and Wes Unseld for the Bullets. Reed played 38 mpg that year and Nate Bowman another 6'10 natural center played 9 mpg - in other words, you had natural centers playing virtually the whole game. Of course those were the days where you had classic position players C, PF, SF, SG & PG, which is not as much the case these days. However, while I agree small ball can work in the college game, I think of small ball as 4 wings/guards and a legitimate big (such as Keita). I just am not aware of any recent examples of successful college teams comprised of only wings and guards. Maybe I am mistaken and not trying to be argumentative.

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Last edit: by NCJohnnie.

Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288164

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usguard wrote: You can't consider us a small team.Ft line can go 6-5- 6-8,6-9 6-10 guards 6-2 6-6 6-4 We have so many good shooters that really rebound well,that a true center will not be an issue. Many true centers become a liabilty in speed ,ball handling and foul shooting etc


Am I missing someone? Who is 6'10"?

Josh Roberts 6'8"
Sedee Kieta 6'9"

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Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288165

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JohnnyFan wrote:

usguard wrote: You can't consider us a small team.Ft line can go 6-5- 6-8,6-9 6-10 guards 6-2 6-6 6-4 We have so many good shooters that really rebound well,that a true center will not be an issue. Many true centers become a liabilty in speed ,ball handling and foul shooting etc

V
Am I missing someone? Who is 6'10"?
Josh Roberts 6'8"
Sedee Kieta 6'9"


The 6’10” guy is the mystery Grad Big we never got...but we did get a terrific 6’5” 5* guard/wing instead!

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Last edit: by Chicago Days.

Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288166

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you can win small but you absolutely cant win when your rebound numbers are disgusting.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. We sucked rebounding and in assists.

That flat out needs to change
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Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288167

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mjmaherjr wrote: you can win small but you absolutely cant win when your rebound numbers are disgusting.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. We sucked rebounding and in assists.

That flat out needs to change


Think assists will go up, and expect that to really go up if Heron is eligible. Just having more scorers should make that total go higher.

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Do we really need a center? 2 months 1 week ago #288168

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mjmaherjr wrote: you can win small but you absolutely cant win when your rebound numbers are disgusting.

I've said it before and I'll say it again. We sucked rebounding and in assists.

That flat out needs to change


Oh we agree on that Mike.
Last year, we had a -5.9 rebounding gap per game, And i think ranked 335th of 351 Div 1 teams.
Putrid.
I think Keita will be a significant improvement over Owens in that regard, and I expect Figgy and (hopefully) Heron to position themselves much better in 2018-19, than Clark or Ahmed or Owens did last season.
The rebounding gap should be less lethal, given hotter shooting, more intense D (by Figgy & Heron & Simon & Ponds & Clark & Williams & Trimble), and more helping out by a flurry of guards / wings, including Ponds, Simon, Heron, Figueroa, Dixon, Trimble & Williams.
Could be an incredibly exciting year.
Sure the heck hoping that'll be the case at any rate!
Lets go Johnnies.
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Last edit: by Chicago Days.
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