Tag Archives: Michael Jordan

Ray Allen or Reggie Miller? Who Takes the Last Shot?

Ray Allen or Reggie Miller

By Matt Moore, howiGit Contributing Writer, Boston, MA

As the Celtic’s Ray Allen closes in on Reggie Miller’s all-time record for three pointers made in the regular season, it’s only fitting to pit the two sharpshooters against one another.  Going into Friday’s game against the Bobcats, Ray is only (34) 3-pointers behind Miller’s mark.  There are two ways to approach this matchup, one being which is the better player and the other being which would you want taking the last shot with the game on the line.  For me, the latter is a more interesting question because their career statistics show very similar numbers:

Miller played 18 seasons with Indiana after being selected 11th overall back in 1987. He made 2,560 3-pointers with a 39.5% shooting percentage.  Overall, he averaged 18.2ppg, 3rpg, and 3ast with a 47.1% field goal percentage. He made 5 All-Star teams and didn’t win a Championship.

Allen is in his 15th season, his third with the Celtics, after stops in Milwaukee and Seattle. He’s made 2,526 3-pointers with a 39.6% shooting percentage. His career line includes: 20.5ppg, 4.3rpg, and 3.7ast with a 45% field goal percentage. Ray has made 9 All-Star teams and has won one ring.

The stats show that this a player comparison is pretty much a wash. Ray has the edge in 3-point percentage and points per game. Miller has him in shooting percentage and 3-pointers made, at least for a few weeks.  The advantage Ray has is that he is still playing, and doing so at a high level – he is enjoying his best season as a Celtic.  Statistically, they are similar talents. However, if I had to say who is the better player then I would say Allen.  He’s just a better overall talent.

But the real question is this: If you need a 3-pointer at the end of the game, do you draw up a play for Ray Allen or Reggie Miller?  My initial reaction is to give the ball to Ray.  Now am I biased because he plays for the Celtics? No. I’m biased because I don’t like Reggie Miller and I never really have.  Something about the way he carried himself on the court always annoyed me, as did the way he kicked his legs out while shooting in an effort to get cheap calls.

That said, you can’t deny that Miller has hit some big shots in his career in even bigger games.  He played in 144 playoff games, and shot 39% from three (Allen has played in 101 games, shooting 40.1%).  Everyone remembers the 8 points in 8.9 seconds against the Knicks in the ‘95 playoffs.  In Game 4 of the ‘98 Eastern Conference Finals he hit a three with .7 seconds left to beat Jordan’s Bulls 96-94.  In 2001, Miller gave the eighth seeded Pacers a 1-0 series lead against Philadelphia in the first round when he hit a game-winning three with 2.9 seconds left. The next year Miller did all he could to stave off elimination against the top-seeded Nets in the first round.  In Game 5 he hit a buzzer beating three from 35 feet to force overtime. His dunk with three seconds left in overtime also led to double overtime, where the Pacers eventually lost and were eliminated.

Allen’s résumé isn’t as extensive in regard to the playoffs.  In 2009 he hit a game winning three to beat Chicago in Game 2 of the second round.  He hit 8 threes in Game 2 against the Lakers in last years Finals. He’s also come through during regular season games.  Celtics fans may remember winners in 2007 against the Raptors, the insane play against the Bobcats, and in 2009 against the 76ers and Charlotte again.  And this is just with Boston.

So putting all these games up against each other proves what? Each has made big shots at various levels, be it in playoff games or regular season games.  Miller was the man in Indiana his entire career and had to make those shots for his team to contend.  Allen had similar situations in Milwaukee and Seattle, but now shares the load with Pierce and Garnett.  The knock against Allen is that he hasn’t played in the same number of big games as Miller, and has even disappeared a little when given the opportunity (0-18 shooting against the Lakers in 2010’s Game 3, for example).

Like I said, my first reaction would be to say give the shot to Ray.  But when you look at what Miller has done in big games, even on the road, you have to like you’re chances with him taking the last shot.  I don’t enjoy choosing Miller, but from an objective standpoint I have to do it. It hurts, but I’ll take Ray for the first 47.5 minutes, then Reggie to close it out.

And who knows, even if he misses, he may stick a leg out and get the foul call.

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Michael Jordan Responds to Lebron James — What Should I Do?

After watching this video — Michael Jordan’s direct response to Lebron James’ “What Should I do?” ad campaign for Nike following his signing with Miami — my initial thought was that Nike CEO Phil Knight must have had something to do with this. Only Nike could pit arguably its two biggest superstar athletes  against one another successfully. Jordan must have called Lebron, explained that this was a good move from a business perspective, and the two agreed to the commercial. But the more I watch this video, the more I think Jordan simply chose to call Lebron out — both because he wanted to, and because it only makes his legend and his brand name that much stronger.

I think this commercial was done perfectly. The message that Jordan worked hard everyday, rather than simply taking his basketball skill as a God-given talent (as he implies Lebron has), couldn’t possibly cut deeper into Lebron’s competitive nature. I guess we can say so long to any sort of mentor/protege relationship between these two. The “Become Legendary” Jordan slogan at the end of video could not work more perfectly. Check it out.

********Apparently this is not going to run as a real commercial, and is simply a mash up of commercials created to make Lebron look bad……that said, my bad — and thank you to Kevin Youkilis for clearing this up…..it’s still awesome regardless*********

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The Top 10 Athletes of My Generation

Let’s first begin this post by defining my generation. For the sake of this list, the athlete must have played the majority of their career between 1990 and 2010.

So what makes an athlete the best? Championships, pure talent, statistics, and longevity all certainly play a large role. But this list is more than that. These are the athletes who in my opinion, did their respective sports in a way that made us say “WOW!” A way that the game or event or match had never been done before. I must say that compiling a list like this is very tough, and I’m not even sure I’m 100% convinced on this list. So please, feel free to argue and suggest other athletes — but you’d better back it up. In no particular order…..

1) Michael Jordan
Why he’s on the list? 31 points per game, 6 NBA championships, a clutch competitor, and spectacular talent.

2) Shaun White
Why he’s on the list? The best snowboarder in history. Including the Olympics and the X-Games, he has 10 Gold medals, 3 Silvers and 2 Bronze.

3) Michael Phelps
Why he’s on the list? He’s not quite human. He went 8 for 8 in Gold Medals at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing — and won several events by absolutely silly margins.

4) Tiger Woods
Why he’s on the list? With 14 majors and counting, he’s still the 2nd best golfer ever to Jack Nicklaus. But, he’s got at least 10 years of his prime left. He’s hit more money shots than Ron Jeremy.

5) Roger Federer
Why he’s on the list? He blew past Pete Sampras with relative ease to become the greatest player in tennis history.

6) Tom Brady
Why he’s on the list? He’s young, he’s cool as hell under pressure, he’s won 3 Super Bowls and set all kinds of records. And he did it at first without a legitimate receiving crew.

7) Wayne Gretzky
Why he’s on the list? He’s far and away the greatest hockey player ever. Look at any all-time hockey statistic — there are way to many to mention just one.

8)Lance Armstrong
Why he’s on the list? He beat cancer and won the Tour de France 7 consecutive times. I couldn’t complete it once.

9) Manny Pacquiao
Why he’s on the list? He’s the first fighter to win 7 different titles in 7 different divisions — and Floyd Mayweather is afraid of him.

10) Ken Griffey Jr.
Why he’s on the list? 630 home runs, 10 Gold Gloves, and never a mention of steroids. Junior could do it on both sides of the field. In 6 seasons in his prime (2001-2006) he averaged 92 games per year (not including several other injured seasons). If he’d averaged 150 games per year instead, he would have ended up with 875 home runs. That’s right, I said it, 875.

I know you all disagree so have at me. Also look for the Top 10 Hitters and the Top 10 Pitchers of my generation coming up soon.

Check out http://www.chrisross91.wordpress.com.

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Michael Jordan. Versus Kobe Bryant

Let me start this post by directing your attention to the title of this post. Let’s make one thing clear — the names Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant don’t belong in the same sentence.

I initially thought that the problem with the Celtics losing the NBA Finals was that, well, the Celtics lost the NBA Finals. But in the few days since that loss, I have quickly come to realize that there is another horrible consequence of the loss — the Michael Jordan. Versus Kobe Bryant comparison is now happening even more than ever. With Michael having 6 NBA Championships and Kobe just capturing his 5th, of course I see why this comparison is happening. Those are the most important numbers, no doubt about. Let’s also take a look at some other stats. While Kobe still has some seasons left in him, both players have played roughly 14 seasons at present.

Points: Jordan 30.1ppg, Kobe 25.3ppg

FG%: Jordan .497, Kobe .455

MVP’s: Jordan 5, Kobe 1

Height: Jordan 6’6″, Kobe 6’6″

You’d have to say advantage to Jordan here as well, although these numbers aren’t super important to this argument. Many critics will then look to aspects of the players such as mental toughness, competitiveness, and drive. Let’s face it — both of these guys are proven closers and heartless competitors. They are both tough as nails. But I’d still give the edge to Jordan.

Perhaps the most overlooked argument in this comparison is the fact that Bryant won three of his NBA Championships with Shaq on his team — arguably the most dominant center of all time. Jordan never played with anybody even close to Shaq’s caliber, let alone a dominant center.

But to me, the argument really comes down to this. Imagine if you could step into the body of both players and feel what it would be like to be them. Sure, Kobe will have some awesome drives and make some impossibly tough shots. But the things that Jordan would do would feel that much more spectacular.

If you don’t believe me, I suggest you watch this video:  http://bit.ly/cnxUew

Jordan is the only guy I know who can make an earring look cool. Plus, his shoes are better and he’s boys with Tiger.

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