Skip to main content

John Salley compares his playing days to the current NBA era and why he would punch Ja Morant if he tried to dunk on him

Salley appeared on “The Breakfast Club” to discuss the current NBA landscape and what makes it different from the era when he played in the league
John Salley

John Salley

Comparing NBA eras and their players is seemingly a never-ending debate within inner NBA circles.

As with anything hypothetical, NBA fans spend countless hours discussing whether particular stars and teams would experience the same level of success in another decade.

The NBA has become an international league

The latest NBA personality to speak on this topic is former Detroit Pistons champion John Salley, who spoke out on "The Breakfast Club" about the current state of the NBA, and if he could play in this current era.

Scroll to Continue

Recommended Articles

"The league is now international. So you can't show insubordination; there are 300 million people in China watching this a night. You can't show anything like, hey, we can be like that. You gotta sit in line because now we're not just I'm tired, I hung out last night. You know, the old way we used to do things. These guys are fortune 500 companies right? To see Ja Morant jump that high, I just trip out when I see this kid, and I tell my wife I said 'yo, this dude is unbelievable' with his usher-looking dad, but his dad like yeah, I made you jump higher, I made you better.

If he dunked on me, I would have punched him in the stomach no question. Michael Jordan dunked on me, and I said next time you go up I'm taking you out of the air. Next time he went up I took him out of there, you're not going to embarrass me in front of my mother on CBS again that's not going to happen."

Salley had a respectable NBA career

It's safe to assume Salley knows a thing or two about what it takes to be successful in the association. The now 58-year-old spent 13 seasons in the league, suiting up 748 times for the Detroit Pistons, Miami Heat, Toronto Raptors, Chicago Bulls, and Los Angeles Lakers.

Salley's career numbers don't jump off the page, posting a modest 7 points and 4.5 rebounds per game, but he remained a steady contributor at all his stops along the way to having a respectable NBA career.

His locker room presence, staring in his role, and on-the-floor leadership led to the collection of four championship rings across three different franchises.

The debate between eras will continue to rage on, but one thing is certain - every championship roster across any decade needed role players like John Salley. 

Los Angeles Lakers forward A.C. Green

“You only missed 3 games in 15 years?!” — Byron Scott sits down with ironman A.C. Green

It's been two decades but Byron Scott still can't fathom former teammate A.C. Green's iron man streak.

Milwaukee Bucks head coach George Karl and Anthony Mason

“The huddles were the worst” — Ray Allen on chaotic Milwaukee Bucks with George Karl and Anthony Mason

It didn't take long for Ray Allen to realize bringing in Anthony Mason was a terrible idea

Chicago Bulls guard Michael Jordan

“I can tell you the truth and it won't sound like false modesty” — Michael Jordan on what made him a special basketball player

Tony Robbins asked MJ what made him the greatest player of all time, and he loved Jordan's answer.

Philadelphia 76ers forward P.J. Tucker

“As long as we’re winning, it doesn’t matter” — P.J. Tucker on his lack of shots on the Philadelphia 76ers

Tucker acknowledged the absence of James Harden is impacting his offensive output.

Memphis Grizzlies guard Mike Conley and Golden State Warriors center Andrew Bogut

“He has zero technical fouls in 15 seasons, that’s amazing” — Andrew Bogut astonished by unbelievable Mike Conley stat

In almost 1000 NBA games, Mike Conley was the ultimate professional and Andrew Bogut is putting the spotlight on that.