Comments about ‘Utah Jazz: Golden State coach Mark Jackson causes stir with comments about John Stockton’

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Published: Monday, Jan. 6 2014 9:20 p.m. MST

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mdp
Bountiful, utah

Moot point... but Jackson left off Pistol Pete and Alan Iverson, even Magic- all better scorers. Scoring is the 2 guard forte', not the point.

TJ
Eagle Mountain, UT

Reminds me of when Isiah Thomas said Larry Bird would just be an average player if he was another race. John Stockton guarded the best point guards very well when he was in his prime. His shooting percent matches well with the other 3 players in question. He hit big shots and was a big time player. Overall, he is the best point guard that ever played as evidenced by his total body of work which include NBA records in assists and steals. These other players will never come close to either record. He is also one of the toughest ever to play the game. John was a master at making those around him better. John might not have been the best shooting point guard in the NBA history but he is right up there near the top, and when you add the other qualities such as assists, steals and toughness, he is the point guard I would choose to start for my team above all the others mentioned. He also lacked an incredible over-abundance of arrogance, which is more than can be said of most of the others mentioned in this article, including Mr. Jackson.

SlopJ30
St Louis, MO

"As for Stockton, he would not last a single game in today's NBA."

This is flat-out hilarious. Read the message boards at any sports site whenever current players are compared to players from the past and a lot of people seem to feel like today's players wouldn't stand a chance back in the day. I've seen howlers like "Lebron would be merely average in the 80's NBA," "Jordn would average 50 with today's rules," and insinuations (repeated here by some of you) that today's stars would curl up in a ball and cry if the physicality of today's game hadn't been curtailed by rule changes. Yet, D2P goes the other direction.

Both extreme sides of this silly debate are wrong, wrong, wrong. Yes, the game evolves, but the top players of those eras would thrive today, and vice-versa. Basketball is still fundamentally the same, shrieks of objection from the old-skool purists and cluless comments from casual fans aside.

As for Jackson, he's right, but so what? Stock was super-efficient, but he could never hit the kind of shots Curry nails every game. Different styles; both very effective.

gehelmke
Bastrop, TX

Lots of good points made here....I'd like to make a few.....
1) Jackson's claim wasn't that Thompson and Curry were the best "players" ever. His claim was that they were the best "shooters" ever.
2) The argument put forth to dispute that statement is Stockton's "field goal percentage"...
3) All Star centers over the years have repeatedly had very high field goal percentages, because most of their baskets are put backs in the form of dunks or tip-ins.
4) When they figure field goal percentages, they lump dunks in with 21 foot jump shots.

These points made, to call a dunk a "shot" is a stretch...To call a lay-up a shot is also a stretch....therefore, to use field goal percentages to determine who is the best shooter is not a fair comparison....If you have some way to go in and find out a percentage of shots other than lay-ups, dunks, or tip-ins, I'd buy that....but if you want to use the NBA FG% stat to judge a shooter, then Wilt Chamberlain was the best shooter in the history of the NBA.

mohokat
Ogden, UT

And in this corner. I really don't care. Utah was blessed to have Stockton. And you know what he came every day every game and did his thing. No crying or whining.

There You Go Again
Saint George, UT

"...The person who said Stockton was the only player he would pay to watch was none other than John Wooden...".

Exactly.

For the better part of 19 years...I never watched a Jazz game wondering if Stock would have some mental or physical hang nail that would keep him from playing...and playing hard.

Denigrating a real players skills by isolating on one part of the entire skill set is laughable.

mark jackson's opinion and $5.00 should be enough to buy a gallon of gas even in most NBA cities.

joe5
South Jordan, UT

I've been watching the NBA since the 1960s. I saw Jerry West, Wilt Chamberlain, Oscar Robertson, Bill Russell, etc in person. Here is my perspective:

- I've never seen an individual player who dominated the court like Wilt Chamberlain. If you changed the supporting casts he and Russell had, Chamberlain would have had all those championships. (Don't get me wrong. I loved Russell and he was a great player. But he was no Chamberlain.)

- The prettiest shot I ever saw belonged to Sam Jones, master of the mid-range bank shot.

- Connie Hawkins was the first highlight reel I ever saw. Dr J, Nique, Jordan, Vince, etal were just later versions of the original.

- David Stern sold out the NBA when he decided stars should dominate instead of teams. This reflected in marketing, officiating, rules, and virtually every other aspect of the game.

- MJ was a great player who appeared greater than he really was due to phantom fouls, uncalled traveling (his scissor-kick first step was legendary), and a fawning media. I personally believe his scoring average would have been 4 pts less per game if he had been officiated like they did in the 1960's.

joe5
South Jordan, UT

(continued)

- The most dominant shot I ever saw was Kareem's sky hook. Absolutely unstoppable!!

- Many of today's players would have excelled in whatever era they played and we are lucky to be watching them. Topping that list are LBJ and Kobe. I can see either of them in my mind's eye playing with the greats from the 60's and the 80's (in my mind, the two greatest NBA eras).

- Dwight is not in that group. I don't think he would have survived five years in those center-dominated eras.

- The 3-pt shot also changed the game dramatically. I still argue with myself whether it was for the better or worse. There is no question it is better for fans. Overall, I think it was better for players and for the game but it has spawned a lot of low-IQ team play.

- Stockton was not the first player with his skill set. I only saw Cousy late in his career but John's game was very similar. I think John was better in most facets of the game but I saw John in his prime. Someone older than me will have to make that call.

sanpaco
Sandy, UT

Seriously? I was expecting some kind of comment about Stockton being overrated and not deserving respect or something. All he's saying is that other players had better shooting stats than Stockton which is pretty obvious. This is a non-story.

Kaladin
Greeley, CO

Stockton was a master point guard. Case closed.

Gerald Rampton
Mapleton, UT

Is Mark Jackson related to Jesse Jackson...!?

JimAg7
South Jordan, UT

Was John Stockton a great shooter? Who knows, really. He didn't shoot enough. The percentages quoted in the article would make him among the best, but how many times did John pass up shots that he should have taken? I love the guy, but I believe this was his biggest weakness. Would his percentage have remained as high if he had shot more? We'll never know. His passing ability is without peer and that certainly put a certain amount of pressure ON the defense. His reluctance to shoot, even when he had the shot took some of that pressure back off the defense. Great player. Great character. Can't argue Jackson's point either way.

FT
salt lake city, UT

An outsider visiting needs to know two things. Don't down grade a Utahn's church or John Stockton. Either is likely to have you tossed to Wendover.

NeilT
Clearfield, UT

He hit the shot that counted and advanced the jazz to the finals. There will never be another Stockton or Malone.

DRay
Roy, UT

Stockton played in a different era, and he himself lamented rules changes that hurt the team aspect of the game. John loved to compete, and in his prime, could clearly outplay today's pampered and coddled "stars."

DRay
Roy, UT

Jeff Hornecek was a great, consistent shooter at 2 guard. He played smart and in his prime, he would best Jackson's players at that which mattered most: winning the game. Horny won the shooting contests on All-Star weekend...how many have these other guys won?

Coolio
SLC, UT

Non-Story. Jackson made a spur of the moment comment and said that John Stockton was a good shooter? Where is the controversy? He's going by his own memory without stats in front of him. He's also propping his own current back-court. Silly headline.

Idaho_Boy
Aberdeen, ID

Stockton is still my all time favorite player. Enjoyed reading his book. Could Stockton shoot, of course he could. He believed more in his teammates shots than his own. I lived in the Midwest during most of his career so didn't get to see him play as much as I wanted. I used to get frustrated looking at box scores when they lost and seeing that Stockton was 4 out of 5 and his teammates were shooting 10 for 30 or whatever. He didn't shoot enough many times to know that he had the hot hand.

Got to see him in a preseason game in Nashville towards the end of his career. He didn't miss a shot in warmups. Now could he hit an off balanced shot with a guy in his face, I don't know. He didn't take those kind of shots. I watched him school a young point guard at the time for the Suns. I think it was Jason Kidd if I remember correctly to start off a game. Kidd couldn't stop him and Stockton scored 6 or 8 quick points on layups and then didn't take another shot until who knows when. That was Stockton.

ed
Los Olivos, CA

He was a very good shooter. Look at his college stats and watch some u-tube. Asside from those things:
1. He played 82 games 16 times. No guard has ever come close to that record.
2. Doug Collins says he was one of the best screen-setters in the history of the league.
3. He was probably playing hurt most of the time. Again, watch u-tube. This guy was a terrific athlete.

SlopJ30
St Louis, MO

"Stockton was not the first player with his skill set. I only saw Cousy late in his career but John's game was very similar."

Cooz was an innovator in the flashy passing game, but he was an undebatably lousy shooter. He's more Ricky Rubio than John Stockton. If Rubio could become even a half-decent shooter, he would own the league. Fuse Jimmer and Rubio and you'd have something.

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