Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think?

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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#22 » by XTC » Thu Nov 25, 2021 8:37 am

Rudy Gay is a prime example of this

All the length and athleticism in the world, but he would rather settle for mid range jumpers. Rudy is one of the biggest waste of potentials in recent history. Dude is still getting by on natural talent.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#23 » by Black Jack » Thu Nov 25, 2021 8:56 am

I hate these threads because it always comes down to the fallacy that having the highest vertical means you should be the most dominant. In that case, Darvin Ham should be headed to the hall of fame right?

Athleticism is a multifaced thing. Hand-eye coordination, body control, footwork, quickness, etc. are all part of it. A guy who doesn't jump out of the gym might be able to smoke a guy who jumps really high, not just using skill but skill based on being able to do things with his floor game the jumper cannot.

So - saying a guy is a "great athlete but not using it" misses that jumping is just one part of athleticism for a basketball player.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#25 » by KGtabake » Thu Nov 25, 2021 11:00 am

Kenneth Faried
Anthony Randolph
Mario Hezonja

Just 3 examples of guys that can't find NBA contracts anymore because their IQ is so low compared to their athletic abilities.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#26 » by Pelly24 » Thu Nov 25, 2021 2:50 pm

Black Jack wrote:I hate these threads because it always comes down to the fallacy that having the highest vertical means you should be the most dominant. In that case, Darvin Ham should be headed to the hall of fame right?

Athleticism is a multifaced thing. Hand-eye coordination, body control, footwork, quickness, etc. are all part of it. A guy who doesn't jump out of the gym might be able to smoke a guy who jumps really high, not just using skill but skill based on being able to do things with his floor game the jumper cannot.

So - saying a guy is a "great athlete but not using it" misses that jumping is just one part of athleticism for a basketball player.


I think people might take it this way, but I don't. To me, Gerald Green, in addition to not being skilled at all, was also very stiff compared to someone like KD, so therefore a bit less athletic. I would argue that someone like Kyrie is more athletic than PG because relative to position, he has less limitations (mainly because it's more important to be fast, shifty and flexible for your position than have a 40-inch vertical, but be kinda slow).

But if you look at someone like KAT, who has great lateral quickness, vertical and all-around agility and his defense has really never been good. That's someone who doesn't use their athleticism the way I think they would. Dame has good lateral quickness but has always been a bad defender, not even becoming a neutral defender over these years.

There are more. I'd say Wiggins actually lacks fluidity and some balance in addition to skill, so I'd say to some degree he's less athletic than people think, so I don't count him.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#27 » by jamaalstar21 » Thu Nov 25, 2021 2:55 pm

Golden Knight wrote:Ibaka.

This dude can dunk from the FT line! He should have been a freak rebounder. Career best of just 8.8rpg and just 3 times above 8rpg. His best per36 rpg is also low at just 11rpg.


Ibaka ruptured his calf in the 2014 playoffs and it was announced he'd miss the rest of the playoffs. Instead Ibaka missed only 2 games before coming back to play through a ruptured calf(?!). It doesn't get talked about much, but Ibaka was not the same player after. After 2014 (age 24), Ibaka's rebound and block percentage fall off a cliff, and he stops attacking the rim (average shot distance moves back by 4 feet). For the next 4 seasons, he's basically a mediocre jump shooter who provides a bit of rim protection. His health clearly improves in 2019 (age 29) as his rebounding and finishing numbers go back up (but he never regains his dpoy-level shotblocking).
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#28 » by jamaalstar21 » Thu Nov 25, 2021 3:04 pm

Pelly24 wrote:
Black Jack wrote:I hate these threads because it always comes down to the fallacy that having the highest vertical means you should be the most dominant. In that case, Darvin Ham should be headed to the hall of fame right?

Athleticism is a multifaced thing. Hand-eye coordination, body control, footwork, quickness, etc. are all part of it. A guy who doesn't jump out of the gym might be able to smoke a guy who jumps really high, not just using skill but skill based on being able to do things with his floor game the jumper cannot.

So - saying a guy is a "great athlete but not using it" misses that jumping is just one part of athleticism for a basketball player.


I think people might take it this way, but I don't. To me, Gerald Green, in addition to not being skilled at all, was also very stiff compared to someone like KD, so therefore a bit less athletic. I would argue that someone like Kyrie is more athletic than PG because relative to position, he has less limitations (mainly because it's more important to be fast, shifty and flexible for your position than have a 40-inch vertical, but be kinda slow).

But if you look at someone like KAT, who has great lateral quickness, vertical and all-around agility and his defense has really never been good. That's someone who doesn't use their athleticism the way I think they would. Dame has good lateral quickness but has always been a bad defender, not even becoming a neutral defender over these years.

There are more. I'd say Wiggins actually lacks fluidity and some balance in addition to skill, so I'd say to some degree he's less athletic than people think, so I don't count him.


You have to look at what they cant do athletically for these kinds of players. Kat is a great example because he looks like a BEAST athlete on some plays, while on others, he looks slow and weak. Kat has a crazy long first step and is super fast sprinting in a straight line. But changing directions he often looks clumsy, weak, and unbalanced. KAT has freaky long legs, giant feet, and a high center of gravity. There are clear gaping holes in his strength profile and his overall athleticism rather than him just not using his gifts properly. Better 1-footed jumper than 2 (like old man Lebron), also the opposite of Aaron Gordon, who is strong and explosive off 2 feet, but looks unathletic jumping off 1 a lot of the time. KAT always looks bad changing directions, especially playing defense on the backline.

Wiggins has no balance problems, but he is physically super skinny, so he cant battering ram to the hoop to any great effect; he gets knocked off his spot pretty easily.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#29 » by Torgeir Bryn » Thu Nov 25, 2021 3:59 pm

Cauley Stein is an amazing athlete for a 7 footer. Not just that he can jump, but moves very well laterally and might be the fastet guy on the team end to end.
But he has flubby hands, bad bbiq and seem to be disinterested and/or high while playing.
Really frustrating guy to watch, even though his advanced numbers have been decent at times.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#30 » by LofJ » Thu Nov 25, 2021 4:10 pm

Until recently Miles Bridges would have been a good answer here. He couldn't fully take advantage of his strength and athleticism because he didn't have the ability to attack the rim off the dribble. The development of his handle is the primary reason for his improvement.

Another former Bobcat/Hornet that qualifies is Gerald Henderson. He was strong, quick, and could jump with anyone else in the league. He just lacked all around skill and he couldn't do much with the ball in his hands. It's a shame his career was cut short by an injury, I think he would have been one of those guys that had a mid-career resurgence on a contender.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#31 » by fanofthegreats » Thu Nov 25, 2021 4:13 pm

Black Jack wrote:I hate these threads because it always comes down to the fallacy that having the highest vertical means you should be the most dominant. In that case, Darvin Ham should be headed to the hall of fame right?

Athleticism is a multifaced thing. Hand-eye coordination, body control, footwork, quickness, etc. are all part of it. A guy who doesn't jump out of the gym might be able to smoke a guy who jumps really high, not just using skill but skill based on being able to do things with his floor game the jumper cannot.

So - saying a guy is a "great athlete but not using it" misses that jumping is just one part of athleticism for a basketball player.


This. It’s why people mistakenly think Vince Carter underachieved when in reality he had nowhere near the physical tools that MJ did. Could he jump like Mike? Sure, but he was way behind as a slasher.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#32 » by JasonVincent » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:12 pm

Anfernee Simons.
Elite level athleticism. Can't drive to the basket
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#33 » by johanliebert » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:16 pm

DroseReturnChi wrote:wiggins, zach lavine, edwards all wolves.

You clearly don’t watch games.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#34 » by johanliebert » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:18 pm

Anybody who’s a two legged jumper. They’re typically the players with great combine numbers but it never translates to real games.

They need space to launch off the top dennis smith jr, Cole Anthony.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#35 » by yoyoboy » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:22 pm

I think some guys who don’t have great in-game athleticism aren’t as athletic as people think. People place too much emphasis on straight-line running and jumping while the game is more herky jerky than that. Thinks like deceleration, balance, lateral flexibility, being able to actually leap in traffic without loading up, quickness of hip and torso rotation, quickness off the ground to contest when sitting in a defensive stance, etc, all matter in an actual game setting when you can’t just just sprint down an open lane and rise above the rim for a high school hoops mixtape.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#36 » by thomchatt3rton » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:39 pm

Thon Maker had a tremendous combination of skill/physical gifts, none of which he could put to any practical use on the court. None of it translated.

Idk if you could call him “athletic” though because although he was, he was also, somehow, spectacularly uncoordinated.


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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#37 » by Lockdown504090 » Thu Nov 25, 2021 5:45 pm

XTC wrote:Rudy Gay is a prime example of this

All the length and athleticism in the world, but he would rather settle for mid range jumpers. Rudy is one of the biggest waste of potentials in recent history. Dude is still getting by on natural talent.

you do realize he came back from a torn achilles right? it takes a ton of work to do that. hes also 35, it takes a lot of work to have the fitness to be in the nba at that age.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#38 » by XTC » Thu Nov 25, 2021 6:09 pm

Lockdown504090 wrote:
XTC wrote:Rudy Gay is a prime example of this

All the length and athleticism in the world, but he would rather settle for mid range jumpers. Rudy is one of the biggest waste of potentials in recent history. Dude is still getting by on natural talent.

you do realize he came back from a torn achilles right? it takes a ton of work to do that. hes also 35, it takes a lot of work to have the fitness to be in the nba at that age.


I'm obviously not talking about Rudy right now.

I'm moreso talking about Rudy Gay in his Memphis/Toronto/Sacramento years. He should have been much better than what he was. He's was/still is a solid player, but he never really lived up to his potential.

Part of the reason why is because he loves his mid range jumpers far too often. In his young days, dude should of been living in the paint and free throw line with his length + athleticism.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#39 » by Lockdown504090 » Thu Nov 25, 2021 6:12 pm

XTC wrote:
Lockdown504090 wrote:
XTC wrote:Rudy Gay is a prime example of this

All the length and athleticism in the world, but he would rather settle for mid range jumpers. Rudy is one of the biggest waste of potentials in recent history. Dude is still getting by on natural talent.

you do realize he came back from a torn achilles right? it takes a ton of work to do that. hes also 35, it takes a lot of work to have the fitness to be in the nba at that age.


I'm obviously not talking about Rudy right now.

I'm moreso talking about Rudy Gay in his Memphis/Toronto/Sacramento years. He should have been much better than what he was. He's was/still is a solid player, but he never really lived up to his potential.

Part of the reason why is because he loves his mid range jumpers far too often. In his young days, dude should of been living in the paint and free throw line with his length + athleticism.

which is true, but is weird because by all accounts Rudy gay is a first guy in and last out the gym training type of dude. He was just a guy who was trapped in his own mind. could have been a superstar in memphis if he was more aggressive.
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Re: Who Some Good Players Who are Great Athletes, but Can't Use Their Athleticism the way you'd think? 

Post#40 » by QingJames » Thu Nov 25, 2021 6:20 pm

Stanimal Johnson.

Great physical gifts. Bad at basketball.

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