Friday, August 16, 2013

5 Players Who Would Have Benefited From Having A 3-Point Line

The NBA game has changed over the last 3 decades in the way it is played. With the institution of the 3-point line during the 1979-80 season basketball would change forever. Many players didn't get to play in the NBA with the 3 point line so this begs me to ask the question “which players pre 3 point line era would have benefited from having played in the league with one”. So let me give you my top 5 players.

#5 Sam Jones

Sam Jones is one of the greatest Boston Celtics of all-time and he was the 1st of his breed. A 6-5 shooting guard with tremendous athleticism some have even said he revolutionized the position. Back in his playing days there was no 3 point line and basketball was much more slower and compact in terms of pace and floor spacing. Jones playing with the edition of the 3 point line would have created more opportunities to exploit the opposition with his size and athleticism by creating more situation for Jones to cut to the basket which would up his scoring average. Either way he is still a hall of famer.

#4 Wilt Chamberlain

Wilt was the most dominant and physically imposing player of his day. How ever an underrated aspect was his passing as he averaged 4.4 assists on his career which is a lot for a big man. Wilt playing in the new era of NBA basketball with a 3 point line would be incredibly beneficial to his game and team contribution which was already very high. Wilt would still have the offense being run through him but with shooters on his team and 3 point shots being worth more it would draw more double teams and create better ball movement which would in turn only benefit Wilt's already astronomically high statistics.

#3 Jerry West

Ranked 16th in scoring all time in NBA history Jerry West was a prolific scorer with 25,192 points in his career. 13 of his 14 seasons he averaged 20+ points per game on 9.7 field goals made. To put into perspective Lebron James had 10.1 field goals made which led the league this past year. Had West played in the NBA with a 3 point line his points per game number might have been even higher then it currently is now. He would also have more chances to be even higher on the scoring list with more chances on the perimeter and better floor spacing.

#2 Elgin Baylor

Elgin Baylor brought playing above the rim to the NBA and scored over 23,000 points in his career. During his time he was one arguably the most athletic forward in basketball. So with his ability to get to the rim playing in the league would have greatly benefited Baylor just creating more open looks for him.

#1 Oscar Robertson

Considered by some to be the greatest basketball player who ever lived playing in the NBA with a 3 point line benefits Oscar Robertson more then anybody else. Check the stats this guy is statistically off the charts. Consider this looking at “The Big O” stats they didn't count two dribble assists or kick out for jump shot assists. If they had he would have averaged a triple double 7 straight years. With the better floor spacing that a 3 point line offers Oscar Robertson would not only have more assists But would also up his scoring his average. The way you see the Miami Heat building around a player like Lebron James is the same way the Royals or the Bucks would build around Oscar playing to his strengths which is only going to increase his numbers and would also increase the discussion for him as the greatest players of all-time.

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