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Is harden top 5 player in the NBA? First take quarantine shares its thoughts

Discussion in 'Houston Rockets: Game Action & Roster Moves' started by Pringles09, May 22, 2020.

  1. Pringles09

    Pringles09 Member

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  2. D-rock

    D-rock Member

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    Steph and KD in top 5????

    Definitely not this season!

    And if referencing top 5 for past decade then Giannis has only been deserving last 2 years not entire decade.

    And Steph was not even best player on his OWN team the last half decade. Same can be said about Lebron with Lakers.

    Finally, AD has no place in top 5 no matter what the criteria is.
     
  3. junk151

    junk151 Member

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    BSPN doing BSPN things.
     
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  4. larsv8

    larsv8 Contributing Member

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    He is top 2 with Giannis.
     
  5. rocketseagles07

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    Current season it doesn’t apply. But I can’t argue with the top 5 ahead of him.

    As for max, his bias/hate towards harden is a joke
     
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  6. Reeko

    Reeko Member

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    not gonna watch...the BS levels are probably off the scale
     
  7. BigM

    BigM Contributing Member

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    Didn’t watch but obviously ****ing yes. Why is he consistently picked out by ESPN to question his talent? The title is never, is Steph Curry a top 5 player? Just weird how little credit Harden gets.
     
  8. YOLO

    YOLO Member

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    Stephen A says yes he is. he speaks a ton of truth.

    Jay Williams says yes he is. also speaks a ton of truth

    Max says no. a lot of his reasoning is dumb af as usual and inconsistent. another day talking out the side of his neck.

    Both Stephen A/Jay put Max in his place. Max stfu
     
  9. SemisolidSnake

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    The GARM can't escape hot take video threads even when there's no basketball to have hot takes about.
     
  10. J.R.

    J.R. Contributing Member

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    First Take's Top 15 players
    15. Jimmy Butler
    14. Kyrie Irving
    13. Paul George
    12. Russell Westbrook
    11. Joel Embiid
    10. Nikola Jokic
    9. Damian Lillard
    8. Luka Doncic
    7. Anthony Davis
    6. James Harden
    5.
    4.
    3.
    2.
    1.

    Is James Harden a top five player in the NBA?

    SAS: I believe he is because I believe you can't teach the kind of scoring he brings to the table. There's a lot of things he can do better defensively, we get that, even though he is formidable in the post. You can't post him up but he won't chase you around the perimeter by in large due to the responsibilities Mike D'Antoni places in his hands. When you average over 30 for three straight years, when you average over 27 for six straight years, when you're that unstoppable inside and out - you can't stop him from getting to the hole, you can't stop him from drawing fouls - this dude is absolutely a magician on the offensive side of the ball. I don't like that he has to dribble so much in order to do it but that's what D'Antoni allows and what facilitates the greatness of Harden to a slight degree but James Harden is James Harden. Inside or out, he gets to the hole, he finishes, he steps back outside, he finishes, he goes to the line, he finishes. This dude is a magician on the offensive side of the ball and most guys cannot do what he can do. He's so formidable offensively, I can't leave him outside the top five at this particular point in his career.

    Max: And yet he's not a top five player because there's five guys definitely better than Harden and a couple others you can argue. Kawhi is definitely better than Harden. When Kawhi goes to a team with a supporting cast, we think they're gonna win a championship. Harden has had a great supporting cast most of his career and never did we think...one year I really thought they would beat Golden State because of the system D'Antoni runs, Harden had an all-time choke performance and so did the rest of the team. There's Kawhi. Whatever you want to say about the Greek Freak getting worse in the playoffs, he doesn't fall off like Harden. In the regular season, he's just as good if not better and better defensively. LeBron James. KD is better than Harden. Steph Curry is better than Harden. He's puts up the same kind of numbers, does it more efficiently, the ball doesn't stick and he has championships. That's five. He's not in the top five. You can argue AD, Luka coming but those five are better than Harden.

    Here's the problem guys, any primary ball handler in D'Antoni's system, his numbers will be inflated and that goes for Harden too. His numbers get pumped up. They were great before he was PG for D'Antoni, they're even better now. Underrated defense. Averaging almost 2 steals a game. Harden's become overall better than average as a defensive player. The problem is in the playoffs he falls off. I'm not talking about individual gaffes like dribbling the ball of his leg, throwing the ball away, jumping under Draymond's legs instead of looking to can the shot to win a playoff game, I'm not even talking about that. Look at the numbers throughout his career. He goes from MVP regular season numbers to just all-star numbers. In the playoffs, it's an enormous sample size. He's had great teams, great teammates, great supporting cast. He's been the guy, been a 6th man, been not the guy and he can't even get to a Finals. He's not top five.

    Jay Williams: If you want to talk about efficiency, OK. Let me ask you a couple questions. Who did Steph, before they became the 'Dream Team' with KD and Klay, who did they beat when it was just Steph & Klay to win a championship?

    Max: Cavs without Kevin Love or Kyrie Irving.

    JW: OK. Who has Harden lost to multiple times from getting a championship or participating in a Finals?

    Max: Like everyone Jay. He's had a long career already.

    SAS: Golden State.

    JW: Golden State, right?

    Max: That was one of the teams.

    JW: If this comes down to Stephen Curry or James Harden, people can take Stephen Curry if they want. Harden has led the league in scoring the last 2 years, about to do it a third year. Harden is one of five players in the history of the game to average 34.4 points per game. Know where that ranks this year? 16th all-time. All-time in the history of the game. You made the argument for yourself with who Steph & Klay had to beat to win their championship as opposed to what James & Chris Paul had to go through. You may call it a choke but he's going against one of the greatest teams ever assembled. You yourself on this show have said those decks have been stacked when KD made that decision.

    Max: They lost because he choked. You can't dance around that. That's what happened.

    SAS: Max, according to you, that's what Steph did against LeBron. I disagree but you were saying he didn't step up and seize the moment...
     
  11. BigM

    BigM Contributing Member

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    The Raptors beat a Golden State team that was a complete shell of itself. I’m not discounting anyone’s championship but if people are going to make arguments about Kawhi putting a team on his back and overthrowing the warriors you better add some ****ing context to it.

    Harden has consistently raised the floor of every team he’s been on. If Harden is on the roster your team is good. Can you say that about Anthony Davis? People act like we were non competitive against The Warriors and that’s just not accurate. Add context and stop being a ****ing asshole. Kawhi isn’t any more of a championship player than Harden, his context is just different and he has the hardware to show for it.

    That 65 win Rocket team would smoke last years Raptors team.
     
    #11 BigM, May 22, 2020
    Last edited: May 22, 2020
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  12. daywalker02

    daywalker02 Easter Egg Hunter - Tell me why? نحن عائلة
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    AD is more of a complimentary player now.

    Prolly a slightly less intimidating Garnett without the fake tough guy act. And likely not as good.

    Still has years to go.
     
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  13. BigBum

    BigBum Member

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    I think Harden is the best player in the nba.

    Morey and MDA did not make him the best.
     
  14. LosPollosHermanos

    LosPollosHermanos MoRley only Fan
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    He may be top 10 due to playoff disappearances and chokings akin to bdsm
     
  15. Juxtaposed Jolt

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    Even if you hated Harden, and I mean absolutely hated Harden, for whatever reason...

    How could you argue against a guy who's come in 2nd for MVP, two of the past three years? And in that odd year out, he actually won the damn thing?

    Literally the "most valuble" player in the league, and apparently, there's 5 other guys ahead of this guy? Meanwhile, as good as Giannis is, these BSPNers probably have Giannis as 2 at worst.
     
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  16. francis 4 prez

    francis 4 prez Contributing Member

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    yeah, people need to put some respeck on that team's name. when KD joined the warriors, i thought they had 3 free championships lined up. i never thought 2 years in they would be trailing in a series, and definitely not that it would be us rising up so quick to be that team. oh waahhhh, iggy was injured. mbah-a-moute was slightly less important than iggy but even more injured and basically hurt us in the first 3 games. at least they got 3 games out of iggy. they had 4 healthy all-stars/HoF'ers and we were up 3-2 until our other all-star got hurt. that's how the cookie crumbles, but it was a great run. considering how legit GSW's defense was, specifically in terms of elite perimeter guys, harden's number were very good in that series. he wasn't very efficient in game 7, but 32 in game 7 is hardly a choke. it's just what happens when you finally run out of energy against a more talented team with no other creator in a game 7. most game 7's aren't epic offensive games.

    and steph has very little claim to be better than harden at this point. he was no where close 2 regular seasons ago. he put up similar numbers to harden in the 2018 wcf despite the warriors having much better perimeter guys to throw at harden than we had point guard type defenders to throw at steph (with PJ and ariza obviously being more for guarding KD) and despite our defensive focus having to also be on KD and klay and golden state only having to focus on cp3. he was even less close to harden last regular season and in the 2019 series, harden outplayed steph by a pretty huge margin. if KD wasn't around killing us for 4.75 games, steph's play certainly wouldn't have had them up 3-2. and then obviously this regular season, even if steph played i don't think anyone thinks he was doing what harden has done.

    and steph basically has harden-level falloff in playoff numbers over his career. he just had unbelievable talent around him to allow them to still win.
     
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  17. SamFisher

    SamFisher Contributing Member

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    I woke up this morning worrying about 100,000 dead and 30% unemployment and ongoing Trumpist degradation but now that I've heard first take is up to it's old tricks, I feel a lot more grounded and purposeful.
     
  18. stilldr34amin'

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    So tired of the media worshipping AD. What has he accomplished in 8 years?

    ...2 playoff appearances? Harden carried a team with Parsons and Lin to the playoffs in his sleep.

    Why does AD constantly get a free pass?
     
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  19. francis 4 prez

    francis 4 prez Contributing Member

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    i don't have a problem with kawhi over harden. he's proven to be an unbelievable playoff performer, however he does it. on an absolute and relative basis. basically no one raises their PER, WS/48, and TS% in the playoffs like he has the last few years. you just don't do it, but he does. i think in relative terms (comparing to his own regular seasons), it's a little unfair in sort of the reverse way it's unfair to harden. harden puts up historic regular season that are absolutely necessary to keep us in games and to get wins, but there's no way anyone who isn't a complete athletic freak is sustaining 36 ppg/62 TS% type numbers in the playoffs when defenses are locked in. by that same token, kawhi clearly treats the regular season like a warm-up. resting all he wants, not driving as much, pretty much chilling. so it's not weird that his numbers go up. sort of like lebron has consistently outperformed in the latter part of his career when he has taken the regular season very lightly compared to when he was younger.

    that said, his absolute playoff numbers, especially last year, are amazing. he actually had a 62 TS% and at least got up to 30.5 ppg, if not 36 ppg. does it help to play with the san antonio borg where they won whether he played or not (something like 7-1 his last year there) or this underrated post-demar toronto team that also won a lot when he didn't play last year and now is still winning a lot without him? definitely. it's a luxury most don't have. it obviously makes is easier to win it all if your teammates are really good (and the other team is injured all series). and it keeps you fresh for playoff time in the first place.
     
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  20. cmoak1982

    cmoak1982 Member

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    He really said that Harden has had great supporting casts? Over Kawhi?
    Wow
     
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