HBK_Kliq_33 wrote: 70sFan wrote:
Kareems scoring volume started declining in the late 1970s and he didn't even finish off his championship run in 1980. Kawhi's 2019 playoff run is superior over kareem's 1980 playoff run because he finished the run healthy and carried a bigger load. Kawhi had a higher peak than post merger Kareem is all im saying.
Kareem scored 35 ppg on 65% TS in 1977. He also averaged 32 ppg on 61% TS in 1980. All in less efficient league and with worse team in 1977 than Kawhi in 2019.
He missed one game and he would have played in game 7 if necessary. He played better than Kawhi in the finals.
In short - Kareem was better scorer than Kawhi (by any measure), he was also better defender and even in terms of passing he was better and more impactful. What is the case for Kawhi here? Other than having better team than Kareem in 1977 or Jabbar missing one game in 1980? Kareem was better in RS and in playoffs both years than any Kawhi year.
Kareem never had the carry job that Kawhi did, he was playing with another superstar in Magic. Kawhi has played with Aldridge and Lowry. Huge huge gap there. 1980s Kareem was spoiled like 2017-2019 Durant, he played with a player arguably better than him.
Kawhi 2017 = Kareem 1980
Both couldn't close for their teams.
Kawhi 2019 > Kareem 1982
You are underrating 2017 and 2019 Leonard defense. He was still great defensively but just coasted a little in regular season 2019 due to coming off injury. 2019 playoff Kawhi defense I feel was superior to 1980s Kareem defense. Kareem was never a great athlete but as he aged he became an average athlete, I've always thought his defense in 1980s looked overrated and he just coasted a lot.
Wow, there is so much wrong in this post that I don't know where to start.
Firstly, Kareem played 3 seasons post merger without Magic. You know that merger happened in 1976, not in 1979 right? He had far worse team in 1977 than Kawhi ever had at any point of his career and he averaged 35 ppg on 65% TS in playoffs, beating very good Warriors team and losing to future champions. This is a carryjob, his guards couldn't even bring the ball to halfcourt at some points. Kawhi's Raptors look like superteam compared to 1977 Lakers.
Secondly, if you want to compare their title runs, then Magic in 1980 wasn't a superstar. He was very talented rookie who didn't realize yet how to maximize his impact. Johnson from 1980 wasn't close to prime Magic, he wasn't elite playmaker yet and he couldn't shoot (his improvement in 1982 is huge in that aspect). He was very good player who played outstanding game 6, but that doesn't make him superstar.
Also, I don't understand why you compare 1982 Kareem to peak Leonard. He was 34 years old at that point, I hope that Leonard is better than 34-35 years old 7'2 center.
2019 Kawhi < 1979 Kareem = 1980 Kareem < 1977 Kareem
Lastly, calling Kareem "never a great athlete" makes me sure that you never saw 1970s Kareem, even on highlights. Dude was 7'2 freak who moved like a SF. He was very quick, had elite coordination and spring legs. I've never seen as nimble 7'2 player as Kareem, he was more agile than most 6'10 centers. Remeber, the merger happened in 1976, Kareem was still in his physical prime in 1977. He was far better athlete than Kawhi at any point of his career. He was also far better defender than Kawhi at any point of his career. I don't doubt Kawhi's defensive ability, he's damn good defender especially when he tried. Kareem was one of the best rim protectors ever in his prime though and he was quick enough to bother perimeter players on switches. Very few players had such an impact on opponents, he could really shut down the paint. That's the impact Kawhi can't touch even at his best. I'd probably take all Kareem seasons until 1984 defensively over Kawhi's best defensive season and that's definitely not 2019. Yeah, when Kareem was over 36 he wasn't great athlete anymore and he coasted defensively but that doesn't make his 1977-80 years any worse.
Kareem during Showtime era (1982-89) was definitely worse than peak Kawhi but you forget that he played a lot more seasons after the merger than that. Kawhi can't touch late 70s Jabbar.