We often judge players by how many times they were an All-Star, All-NBA 1st, 2nd or 3rd, MVP, Defensive Player of the Year, and so on. The problem with that is we often forget how arbitrary rules are around these awards. For instance, if you went by All-Star appearances, it would appear like Mike Conley was an average point guard of his era. That appearance would be very wrong.
Conley has long suffered from being in the Western Conference, playing in an era of so many excellent guards that he never got in – while a lot of guards from the East are All-Stars just by chance of playing in that conference. The same almost happened to Quentin Richardson.
Richardson played with Steve Nash in the 7 seconds or less era. If you know anything about basketball, you know that team was explosive, with a monster pick-and-roll combo in Nash and Stoudemire supported by a cast of shooters. Richardson was one of the best of those. However, the NBA didn’t allow him to compete in the 3 point contest because he didn’t have a high enough percentage – despite the fact he led the league in 3pt attempts and makes. Then Steve Nash stepped in.
Richardson won the 3 point contest that year, proving he was an excellent shooter. He would’ve lost the opportunity if Steve Nash hadn’t stood up for his teammate. Goes to show, a “gangsta'” may appear in many forms