What’s beautiful about the game of basketball is that it is constantly evolving. For the last several seasons, fans have seen with their own eyes how the league has turned into a 3-point shooting fiesta. It’s only in this era where 3-pointers are seen as highlights.
It’s all good entertainment for fans. But if ex-NBA players are concerned, these new trends are points to ponder on. Basketball icons Kevin Garnett and Jamal Crawford sat down and talked about how different the game is today from their era. The two were amazed upon their discovery at how easy it is to drop 30 points today.
Per SHOWTIME Basketball, Crawford and KG reminisced on the time when big men like Shaquille O’Neal, Tim Duncan, and Karl Malone were the focal points of the offense. Back then, the logic was simple: the closer you are to the rim, the better the shot. Crawford pointed out that the worst shot in basketball then was the off-the-dribble 3-pointer. Nowadays, it’s not just guards who jack up these types of 3-pointers. Wings and big men, too, joined in on the fun. For Crawford, this license to shoot from everywhere has made it easy to score 30 points on any given night.
Jamal Crawford: Let me give you the formula to 30 points. I'm going to shoot 10 threes a game, make three or four of them. 12 points. I'm going to get four lay-ups. I'm at 20.
Kevin Garnett: Got your 10 free throws, seven free throws.
JC: I'm at 30. And that's not even a hot night. That's just a night.
Crawford highlighted that he isn’t downplaying this new form of the sport. This brand of basketball demands a different skillset from players. They either have to adapt or get sent to the end of the bench.
It’s quite interesting why Crawford and Garnett are so shocked at how easy it is to drop 30 points today. If the two of them were playing today and well within their prime, there’s no question they’ll thrive. We all know that Crawford is a lethal three-level scorer. The man has exploded for 50 points several times in his career.
As for KG, the Hall of Famer has that mid-range jump shot in his arsenal. He wasn’t your typical big man who camped in the post. KG has that fadeaway jump shot, too, which he utilizes more often than not. Apart from his offensive package, KG can defend all positions as well. His length, quickness, and versatility would still make him an elite player in this era.