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Thread: Will the Zags ever have a player better than John Stockton

  1. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzdelmar View Post
    Nearly 400 schools play D1, plus 100s more at other levels and then there are tons of international sources. Stockton is a top 50 nba player, arguably top 25. Do the math. True there are some schools with multiple top 50 players, but for GU? Don’t think so.
    BUT, he was somewhat of a late bloomer. Now, I know he made the US college team that played against the world, but he didn't start or even have a huge role his first year or two in the NBA. So, if we're looking at JUST college years, or "year" in one case, and ignoring NBA accolades - bc of course right now Stockton would be the best everything "all things considered."

    If we're just looking at the college player, NWG would be … I dunno. Against BYU the announcer said "He has mastered the college game" - and there is an argument that we would have won the NCAA championship if he hadn't twisted his ankle so badly at the most critical time.


    I just dunno.
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    Quote Originally Posted by DixieZag View Post
    BUT, he was somewhat of a late bloomer. Now, I know he made the US college team that played against the world, but he didn't start or even have a huge role his first year or two in the NBA. So, if we're looking at JUST college years, or "year" in one case, and ignoring NBA accolades - bc of course right now Stockton would be the best everything "all things considered."

    If we're just looking at the college player, NWG would be … I dunno. Against BYU the announcer said "He has mastered the college game" - and there is an argument that we would have won the NCAA championship if he hadn't twisted his ankle so badly at the most critical time.


    I just dunno.
    The OP was if another Zag player could approach or exceed JS as an NBA player. NWG not even in the mix. The Bonus has a shot, I suppose, but a very long one. He won’t even get to dad’s level.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzdelmar View Post
    The OP was if another Zag player could approach or exceed JS as an NBA player. NWG not even in the mix. The Bonus has a shot, I suppose, but a very long one. He won’t even get to dad’s level.
    Domantas has no chance. He'll continue a great NBA career but as you said, won't equal the legacy of his dad and won't end up a top-100 all timer.

    I think in order to outrank Stockton in terms of NBA career greatness (so approx top 20-25 all time), it would have to be an athletic PG with deep 3pt range and huge longevity (Lillard or Curry or HArden type player) or else a 6'7" to 6'9" wing or Rui type offensive juggernaut player with a better outside shot and handles than Rui (Kawhi, Paul George, Lebron, arguably Durant who is freakishly thin, coordinated, and quick for being 7'). Aside from Embiid and Davis as true "bigs", those 2 body types are basically the archetype of a player that can take over games and dominate lineups these days. I don't see a top-25 all time spot happening for a traditional post player or even a forward who can't handle the ball better than Sabonis. Nor for even the best 3-and-d type players (Draymond Green) or good but not elite guards (John Wall, Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker).

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzdelmar View Post
    The OP was if another Zag player could approach or exceed JS as an NBA player. NWG not even in the mix. The Bonus has a shot, I suppose, but a very long one. He won’t even get to dad’s level.
    Sorry, misread that part.

    No, there is just slightly over a zero percent chance. Which is saying almost nothing about the future Zag's success.

    It's irrelevant to the argument, but Rui is going to be the richest, not really close in that, but player? Stockton is our player for the ages.
    Whenever you find yourself on the side of the majority, it is time to pause and reflect.
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  5. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by LTownZag View Post
    Domantas has no chance. He'll continue a great NBA career but as you said, won't equal the legacy of his dad and won't end up a top-100 all timer.

    I think in order to outrank Stockton in terms of NBA career greatness (so approx top 20-25 all time), it would have to be an athletic PG with deep 3pt range and huge longevity (Lillard or Curry or HArden type player) or else a 6'7" to 6'9" wing or Rui type offensive juggernaut player with a better outside shot and handles than Rui (Kawhi, Paul George, Lebron, arguably Durant who is freakishly thin, coordinated, and quick for being 7'). Aside from Embiid and Davis as true "bigs", those 2 body types are basically the archetype of a player that can take over games and dominate lineups these days. I don't see a top-25 all time spot happening for a traditional post player or even a forward who can't handle the ball better than Sabonis. Nor for even the best 3-and-d type players (Draymond Green) or good but not elite guards (John Wall, Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker).
    Most of the greats have been durable players and have landed on great teams with great teammates.

    To answer the OP’s question, theoretically the Zags have a better odds now at having a program alum reach the top 20, but Stockton’s career denies probability.
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    Probably similar odds to Gonzaga producing another crooner like Bing Crosby—virtually nil

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    Perhaps accomplished already if based strictly upon college careers. Apples and oranges in today's world because players of that caliber don't stick around for more than a year or two. We will never know how some of these players would have fared over four years at GU.

    If you base it upon college and NBA career...…..No way.
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    Because we can't have a thread about Stockton without this, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CEmacNvCj4A

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    I see a few guys that could theoretically enter that top 50 realm if they really push themselves. Let’s start with Brandon Clarke since I think he has potential to get there based on his defense, rebounding, and offensive efficiency. While I don’t see him playing as long in the league as Stockton, he could easily play 12-15 years with his level of concentration on both offense and defense. Perhaps his ceiling is a more offensively well rounded Dennis Rodman minus a couple rebounds. He absolutely crushed it in summer league, which isn’t always quite predictive but is definitely a good sign. He is also set to play with an amazing passer in Ja Morant, which could easily lead to a longtime connection much like Karl Malone had. Realistically, I’d put his chances in the 10-15% range. Keep in mind he’ll stay motivated having been overlooked in high school, college, and in the NBA draft.

    Could Rui wind up as a cross between Carmelo Anthony and Giannis Antetokounmpo? He’s not as long or defensively gifted as Giannis, but he could end up becoming a much better defensive player than Carmelo. His hunger has been questioned a bit at times, but could also be growing pains as he gains better stamina that comes with full time NBA training regimens. Part of what could propel him is being on a great team, which the Wizards are not set up to be at the moment. His big picture outlook could change, and perhaps he could become the best player on a contending team. I’d put his chances closer to 5% given his current defensive flaws. Realistically, he looks like a good second or third option for a championship level team. Not bad if he wins some as an active player, and perhaps a back door into the John Stockton conversation.

    Could landing a guy like Jalen or Paolo end up making the difference? Could it be a less heralded player who makes massive improvements like some former Zags? Is there a guy on this current roster that has the potential? There is obviously not a clear cut answer, but I think with a bit of dreaming that there’s a higher than nothing chance that another Zag could knock on that rarefied air.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LTownZag View Post
    UNC based on Michael Jordan and Vince Carter alone.

    UCLA with Kareem, Walton, Reggie and Westbrook

    Kansas with Wilt, Paul Pierce, Joel Embiid

    Arizona has a lot of very good but not all time top-50 types (Kerr, Stoudamire, Iguadola, Jason Terry, Mike Bibby, Richard Jefferson)
    Houston with Clyde and Hakeem

    LSU with Shaq, Pistol Pete and maybe Bob Pettit.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CarolinaZagFan View Post
    Houston with Clyde and Hakeem

    LSU with Shaq, Pistol Pete and maybe Bob Pettit.

    Ben Simmons (if he had a jump shot).

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    As good, possibly; better, nope!

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    Quote Originally Posted by LTownZag View Post
    UNC based on Michael Jordan and Vince Carter alone.

    UCLA with Kareem, Walton, Reggie and Westbrook

    Kansas with Wilt, Paul Pierce, Joel Embiid

    Arizona has a lot of very good but not all time top-50 types (Kerr, Stoudamire, Iguadola, Jason Terry, Mike Bibby, Richard Jefferson)
    There's no way that Joel Embid is in the top 50. Vince Carter might not be either. VC is a great player (one of my all time favorites to watch, and the best dunker ever), but basketball's been around for a long time and we're talking 50 spots.

    Just for reference (not that I co-sign it), Bill Simmons's basketball pyramid (2010) has VC at #89. Reggie Miller at #63. And that's before you add in all of the great players that have flourished since 2010.

    https://www.basketball-reference.com...s_pyramid.html

    Does UNC have a player besides MJ that was better than VC?

    I agree to Kareem (indisputable) and Westbrook (have to for averaging a triple double 3x).

    And I agree to Wilt and Pierce.

    So that leaves me with Wake (and maybe I'm wrong about Chris Paul), Georgetown, UCLA, LSU, Houston, and Kansas

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    So, that's five schools (plus maybe Wake).

    No, I don't think GU will ever have another top-50 guy. I have my doubts that NCAA basketball will exist for another 100 years, but who knows?

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzdelmar View Post
    The OP was if another Zag player could approach or exceed JS as an NBA player. NWG not even in the mix. The Bonus has a shot, I suppose, but a very long one. He won’t even get to dad’s level.
    I mean Aryvdas Sabonis was probably at a higher level than Stockton tbh but we'll never truly know since he never played in the NBA at his peak.


    I generally agree with you but Gonzaga is unquestionably a top-10 program these days. Who knows what the future holds?

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    This thread had zero intention of belittling the amazing career of John Stockton. I believe that this could become more of a conversation if the Zags have someone else make a couple all star and all nba teams. Until then, it’s conjecture based on the recent meteoric rise in recruiting. I’m not going to entirely dismiss a player surpassing Stockton but I’m not going to predict it until that player reaches some high marks.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Malastein View Post
    Now that Gonzaga is literally competing for obvious future professionals on the regular, will they produce someone who ends up with a better professional career than John Stockton?
    I think - end to end - very few NCAA schools will have a second "~top 20 all time" player ever going forward.

    How many have more than 1 already... just UCLA and LSU?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Once and Future Zag View Post
    I think - end to end - very few NCAA schools will have a second "~top 20 all time" player ever going forward.

    How many have more than 1 already... just UCLA and LSU?
    Exactly. Even having one player of John’s caliber coming out of GU is exceptional.
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  20. #45
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    Here's a "top 25 all time greatest" list from Bleacher Report. You can find others online - most are about the same.

    1. It's a few years old and doesn't include Lebron (No college) or Steph (Davidson) or Durant (Texas) or Dirk (no college) or Kawhi (SDSU) or Harden (Arizona State) or Giannis (no school) or Scottie Pippen (central Arkansas). None of those guys have any other potential top-25 players from their schools.

    I think it's safe to say that the US Naval Academy (David Robinson) Seattle U (Elgin Baylor) and San Francisco (Bill Russell) will never produce better players than they have so far.

    The only universities with 2 players are LSU (Shaq, Bob Pettit) and Houston (Elvin Hayes, Hakeem). But given the shaky position of Hayes and Pettit on top-25 all time lists, it's possible that a list circa 2020 would have no single university to produce 2 top-25 players. The other contender would probably be UCLA with Kareem and Russell Westbrook. (Russ' legacy a bit up in the air at the moment). I don't buy Wake Forest, since Chris Paul isn't a top-25 guy.

    The schools of today's (edit: or former) WCC membership have more top30 players (Stockton, Bill Russell, Elgin Baylor) than the hallowed blue bloods of Duke, Kentucky, Kansas, and UNC. (Jordan, Wilt).

    25. John Stockton (Gonzaga)

    Stockton is the all-time leader in both total assists with 15,806, and the all-time leader in total steals with 3,265. Over his 20-year career, he averaged 13.5 points and 10.5 assists, along with three rebounds and 2.2 steals. He also shot an amazing 51.5 percent from the field, 38.4 percent from the three-point line, and 82 percent from the free-throw line.

    He was also a very good defensive guard, as he was selected to five All-NBA defensive teams, all second-team selections. He also led the league in both total assists and assists per game for nine consecutive seasons, from the 1987-1988 season through the 1995-1996 season.


    However, he never won a championship with the Jazz in his long and durable career, as they lost both times they advanced to the Finals against the Chicago Bulls in the 1990s.

    24. Charles Barkley, "Sir Charles" (Auburn)

    23. Kevin McHale (Minnesota)

    22. Karl Malone, "The Mail Man" (Louisiana Tech)

    21. Elvin Hayes, "The Big E" (U of Houston)

    20. Julius Erving, "Doctor J" (UMASS Amherst)

    19. Elgin Baylor (Seattle University)

    18. Isiah Thomas (Indiana)

    17. Bob Pettit (LSU)

    16. Kevin Garnett, "The Big Ticket" (Straight to NBA)

    15. David Robinson, "The Admiral" (US Naval Academy)

    14. John Havlicek, "Hondo" (tOSU)

    13. Jerry West, "Mr. Clutch" (WVU)

    12. Shaquille O'Neal (LSU)

    11. Moses Malone (N/A)

    10. Oscar Robertson, "The Big O" (Cincinnati)

    9. Kobe Bryant (straight to NBA)

    8. Tim Duncan, "The Big Fundamental" (Wake Forest)

    7. Bill Russell (USanFran)

    6. Hakeem Olajuwon, "The Dream" (Houston)

    5. Larry Bird (Indiana) (edit Indiana State)

    4. Wilt Chamberlain, "The Big Dipper" (Kansas)

    3. Michael Jordan (UNC)


    2. Kareem Abdul Jabbar (UCLA)

    1. Earvin Johnson, "Magic" (Michigan State)
    Last edited by LTownZag; 09-28-2019 at 07:13 AM. Reason: Corrected "Hando" to "Hondo"

  21. #46
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    minor correction, but maybe a fun one for anyone who didn't know-- bird actually went to indiana state (same school manny arop transferred to, iirc). led them to a national championship game appearance vs magic and michigan state.

  22. #47
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    Baylor WAC

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    Quote Originally Posted by jazzdelmar View Post
    Baylor WAC
    Nope.

    Baylor (late 50s) played at Seattle prior to the WAC or WCC existing.



    It's amazing to me that there's not a single college that claims 2 former players on most top-30 lists, and there's not a single Duke or Kentucky player and no Kansas player since 1960.

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    Quote Originally Posted by LTownZag View Post
    Nope.

    Baylor (late 50s) played at Seattle prior to the WAC or WCC existing.


    Ok but why did you list him w WCC?
    It's amazing to me that there's not a single college that claims 2 former players on most top-30 lists, and there's not a single Duke or Kentucky player and no Kansas player since 1960.

    Ok but why did you list him w WCC?

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    BR just updated that top 50 and caused a little bit of a Twitter stir by putting Kobe where he belongs, outside of the top ten.

    Stockton fell to 29, with Chris Paul jumping ahead somehow. So two Wake Forest guys ahead of him on that list now

    https://bleacherreport.com/articles/...op-50-revealed

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