Interesting paragraph from Bill Simmons look at Dwight Howard:
"By Year 10, you are who you are as a big guy. Hakeem peaked the latest of anyone — Year 9 — and trust me, Dwight Howard ain't Hakeem. Kareem peaked in Year 2 and kept peaking all the way through Year 8. Shaq, Mourning and Moses peaked in Year 8. McHale peaked in Year 7. Ewing peaked in Year 6. Duncan, Robinson, Gilmore and Walton peaked in Year 5. Dwight Howard peaked from Year 5 through Year 7, and now he's here. "
I know everyone says big guys take a little longer, but the number of star centers that didn't reach their peak until 7th year or after is truly interesting. Just more reason that JV should be untouchable. I don's see any reason he shouldn't keep getting better for years.
Robinson was 25.
A lot of the older guys and Duncan played 4 years of college.
Shaq played one year of college.
Howard was high school.
I agree with the premise though: Howard has peaked and as his physical abilities decline, he will be useless because he does not have the fundamentals.
"Championships are what we live for, now lets go win them."Tim Leiweke
Basketball has clear winners every night --except at the draft, which is all homework, politics and chance.
Also the fact that peak is basically just talking about best year(s) in terms of production.
I mean, Duncan's "peak" year is pretty similar to his first 8 seasons. His point total was "noticeably" higher I guess, hitting 25 ppg, as opposed to low-20s in the other seasons. He only averaged under 20 points once in his first 10 seasons (and it wasn't his rookie year).
Anyway, all this just to say that "peak" isn't what interests me, it's "prime". How many prime years can a player have? And in this question, being a skilled, fundamentally sound player makes a big difference.
So guys like Duncan, Hakeem, Kareem, etc., that have solid skills, usually reach their prime faster, and stay in it longer. I mean, Duncan didn't win a ring in his "peak" year. He won in his rookie year, and then didn't win his second until the season after his "peak"...and then 2 more after that...because really, he hadn't started declining at all.
But for a guy like Howard, there are already doubts as to whether he's done with his "prime" years. Will he be able to contribute as a main guy to a championship run...5 years after his peak (Spurs won in '07, 5 years after TD's peak)? Or how about more than a decade later even at a near-elite level?...like Duncan is now.
Anyway, I'm really happy JV is a player who utilizes different fundamental skills and seems to have a strong ball IQ.
It could be 5 or more years before you really see what you have with JV, and he could keep improving for 9. Couldn't be more excited. Sign him to a 10 year contract right now, at 6 million per and reap the benefits for years. (If only they could)
I'm so glad Bryan is no longer the one giving out new contracts/extensions.
JV seems to show the attitude, and his improvement over the first season shows an ability to learn and adapt. going to be fun watching him develop.
Olajuwon for example....the first year of his "peak" according to this thing was actually the last year of his defensive "peak". After his 9th season, his defensive numbers would never stay as high as they were...his defensive "peak" started around his 4th season. Just a messy word....Hard to use and be precise.
I agree that words are important. I like your reference to "prime." I think all "peak" speaks to (if it is 6-7 years after joining the league) is how long a player might have been in his "prime." If a player peaked at 28, he was probably rocking it for 24, 25, 26, and 27.
I guess the era needs to be addressed here as well.
Those old guys played in the more competitive era.
Peaking during that time playing against some of the best players who ever played the game
can be different playing in this era where there is virtually no competition.
JV doesn't have to play against elite bigs every time.
watch the new GM whoever it may be trade JV for Gasol and Bynum or something.... lol
watching Duncan tonight makes me want to wish JV becomes the next Duncan.